We all like to move.  It enlivens us and improves our learning abilities.  Therefore why not dance Maths.  Erik Stern and Dr Karl Schaffer have been doing this for the last 20 years and explain their thinking in this TED lecture

We dream of a movement curriculum for Maths that can be accessed by teachers, students and parents.

Lets just look at some of the elements of the curriculum and dream:

Number Bonds  7+ 3 Seven hops  and 3 steps = “I have traveled 10 paces”
Adding /Subtracting Numbers Dance the number line for different sums
Multiplication 3 steps forward 4 steps to the side makes a rectangle,its area is 12 jumps.  Using rhythm clapping and stepping to do times tables
Division How many hands span fit into an arm ( standard Michael Jackson move)?How many ways can we arrange 12 in  a rectangle form (Roman marching dance)?How many steps in a leap?  One student is a stepper and the other a leaper.
Symmetry Symmetry is the heart of dance:A mirror line between people

Amirror line down your body

A mirror line though the middle of your body

Rotation Turns through 90, 180, 270, 360clockwise and anticlockwise

Turns through 45, 135

Turns by windmilling of arms

Turns at the waist

Forming shapes and turning

Oh this goes on forever!

Fractions Form into groups, each member has a hat:¾  of the group flip on the hats

1/3 of the group squat

¼ of the group spin


Percentages This is in development
Ratio Ratio equivalence dancing:One finger  left  – five fingers right dance

Five finger left – 25 finger right dance

10 finger left  – 50 finger right dance


Formula Snake dance: as the number of people in the snake changes so does its length. Use cards to add students on.Create a dance machine with 6 students.  As the teacher changes the variable the music tempo increases and the machine works harder.  The machine could turn quicker, move more boxes, jump higher etc…
Area & Perimeter Perimeter – Dance out the edges of shapesArea – Floor work spreading over whole area of space
Circles Forming circles as a group and unwrapping into straight lines.  Forming spokes in a circleChants with formula
Translation, Transformation, rotation Dance on a large Cartesian gridMake shapes by forming together and then moving.

Create a performance piece.

Balancing equations X = dancer with black sack   10 = 10 peopleLine dances with an equals down the middle. We do the same to both sides and end up with black sack equals number at the end.


Understanding functions:Y=x2Y=sinx; Y =tanx; Y=mx+c Dance out the shapes of the curves.   Hand movements can follow the shape of the curve

We are looking for a group of professional dancers to roll out a programme nationally in June 2014.  If you are interested please contact us.

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