Pi Day 2014

F-M students celebrate “Pi Day”
F-M senior Hannah Kraus participates in the pi digit contest.

Through music, puzzles and more, Fayetteville-Manlius High School students recently celebrated a calendar date that approximates the digits of the mathematical constant known as pi.

Math enthusiasts from around the world celebrate Pi Day on March 14, or 3-14, because the date equates to the digits of pi (3.14159…). The Greek letter pi is the symbol used in mathematics to represent the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter – which is approximately 3.14159. Pi has been calculated to more than one trillion digits beyond its decimal point, and it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern, according to the Pi Day website.

On March 18, F-M students during a special mid-morning assembly celebrated "Pi Day" with choreographed musical performances, an F-M rendition of the game show "Family Feud," a Rubik’s cube tournament and a pi digit memorization contest.

Several students and staff members embraced the "Pi Day" dress code, which included a green t-shirt emblazoned with the event’s 2014 theme on the front and back. The shirt’s design – which was created by seniors Lizzie Pellegrino and Olivia Pinner – was chosen during a contest held earlier in the year.

To kick-off the assembly, seniors Hannah Kraus, Sarah Sidd, Kalie Buchman, Mackenzie Kingsley and junior Ava Giglio performed a dance routine to the dance-pop song "Timber." While the beat of the song was untouched, students modified the lyrics to reflect all things mathematics and pi.

The Rubik’s cube competition’s preliminary round hosted 20 students, including seniors Thomas Wong, Aidan Procopio, Sophia Roberts, Sofia Elbadawi, Casey Green, Caroline Tangoren, Mike Lee and Zheng "Leo" Zhu; juniors Curtis Coughlin, Dante Pavone, Adrian Temnycky, Tibby Mihaila, Danny McHale, Tysen Tressness and Edward Cheatham; sophomores Andrew Sopchak, Max Benman and Pearse Lehmann; and freshmen John Hrbac and Jaihui Laio. Each student twisted and turned the multicolored squares on their three-dimensional puzzles as quickly as they could.

Students John and Leo advanced to the final round of play, where John was ultimately named champion of the cube. They each received a gift certificate to Pizza Hut and a miniature Rubik’s cube for their efforts.

Highlighting the event’s agenda was the pi digit memorization contest. Senior Hannah Kraus; juniors Ryan Tatu, Josh Schaeffer, Jacquelyn Quinn Schmidt and Abby Swanson; sophomore Johnny Nolan; and freshman Sarah Popp participated in the activity’s opening round, which required the students to write as many digits of pi as possible in about five minutes. For each correct digit written, students earned a point; for missing or erroneous digits, two points were subtracted from the student’s score.

Hannah and Sarah – with scores of 561 and 599 respectively – advanced to the final round.

Facing each other, under the glow of the stage’s spotlights and in front of a silent audience, Hannah and Sarah went head-to-head reciting the digits of pi. Sarah was ultimately crowned the pi digit champ as she delivered the 797th digit.

Sarah received a gift certificate to Nice-N-Easy and tickets to the Rosamond Gifford Zoo. Her name will be engraved on the "Pi Day" trophy displayed in the math wing.

With the "Pi Day" champion officially crowned, seniors Mike Mintskovsky, Matt Hausladen, Justin Jones, Kait Franey, Matt Stegemann, John Stone, Sean Brown and Jacob Pulver delivered the assembly’s song-and-dance finale.

Sponsored by F-M High School’s Math Department, "Pi Day" is held each year on or around pi’s commemorative calendar date.

The department would like to extend their appreciation to the following individuals and organizations for contributing to the event’s success:

  • Nice-N-Easy, Pizza Hut and the Rosamond Gifford Zoo for donating prizes;
  • The entire Math Department for organizing and publicizing the events;
  • BroJo classes for promoting "Pi Day" with morning news features;
  • The staff and student audio/visual team and stage crew;
  • Student musicians and dancers for performing the opening and closing numbers;
  • All of the faculty members and administrators who support the "Pi Day" assembly.
  • Math enthusiasts are already buzzing about 2015’s "Pi Day." On that day, for one shining moment, the date and time - 3/14/15; 9:26:53 - can be written to reflect the first ten digits of pi in perfect order.


    Fayetteville-Manlius High School seniors (from upper left) Jacob Pulver, John Stone, Matt Stegemann and Sean Brown dance to a pi-themed version of Justin Timberlake’s "Suit and Tie" during "Pi Day" 2014.


    Fayetteville-Manlius High School math teacher Chris Alvarez reviews the work of John Shaeffer and Ryan Tatu during the preliminary round of the pi memorization contest.


    Contest finalists Hannah Kraus and Sarah Popp take to the microphones to recite the digits of pi during the assembly’s memorization contest.


    During a session of "Family Feud," Fayetteville-Manlius High School math teacher Chris Alvarez asks students Steven Winschel and Laurin Goldberg to name a word that includes "pi."


    Changing the song’s title and a handful of lyrics to honor "Pi Day," seniors Justin Jones, Mike Mintskovsky, Matthew Hausladen, Mackenzie Kingsley and Kait Franey dance to their version of an Outkast song.


    Senior Hannah Kraus sings as junior Ava Giglio and seniors Sarah Sidd and Kalie Buchman perform a dance routine to kick-off "Pi Day" 2014.


    Fayetteville-Manlius science teacher Mary Ward takes notes as she reviews the work of student Jacquelyn Quinn Schmidt during the assembly’s pi digit memorization contest.


    Twenty Fayetteville-Manlius High School students participated in the Rubik’s cube competition during the "Pi Day" assembly.


    Raising his deciphered Rubik’s cube, student John Hrbac emerges as the winner of the contest’s preliminary round.


    Students John Hrbac and Zheng "Leo" Zhu try to work accurately and quickly as they turn the squares on their Rubik’s cube during the "Pi Day" contest’s final round.

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