ABOUT THE JULIA ROBINSON FESTIVAL
The mission of the Julia Robinson Mathematics Festival is to inspire students to explore the richness and beauty of mathematics through activities that encourage collaborative, creative problem-solving.
The festival is a noncompetitive celebration of great ideas and problems in mathematics.
HOW TO HELP
To make a tax-deductible donation to the festival, click here and choose Seattle from the drop down menu.
Contact us to learn more about how you can support next year’s festival.
HOW IT WORKS
During the festival, students can join any activity or game table and work collaboratively with the volunteers and students there. Students are welcome to try out several tables until they find one that particularly interests them; once they do, they are encouraged to spend 30 – 45 minutes or more at that activity.
At 12:30, we will have an inspirational closing talk by Dan Finkel from Math for Love.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: Who was Julia Robinson?
A: Julia Robinson was a 20th Century mathematician who worked at Berkeley, where the festival was first founded. You can read about her at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julia_Robinson
Q: Can parents participate?
A: No. Parents may not participate at the tables with their students and volunteers. However, we will have some tables where parents may chat with each other, work on festival problems, and play mathematical games.
Q: But I love math! Why can't I join in?
A: If you would like to be a part of the festival, we would love to have you volunteer! Volunteers will help us set up, run, and wrap up the festival (9:00am - 2pm on Jan 21st).
Volunteers who are running an activity or game table should plan to make an additional training of 1-2 hours on the afternoon of Jan 20th. More details will follow.
Q: I have a conflict. Can I come late/leave early?
A: Yes. This is an easy festival to drop into for as long as you’d like.
Q: My 3rd-grader is 9, and would love this. Can I bring her?
A: Unfortunately no because activities are designed specifically for students grades 4 and up.
Q: What if my third grader is doing sixth grade math?
A: Please wait for our next year festival. We have to draw a hard line on grade level for social reasons.
Q: Can I drop my kids off and leave?
A: It's up to you and your child. We are providing oversight for the mathematics activities, but we are not keeping track of each child. You are responsible for your child. You may leave them unattended at the festival, but only if you trust them to handle themselves.
Q: How is this different from a math competition?
A: Our math activities are designed to engage and puzzle. Students should expect to persevere. They will generally spend 30-60 minutes on activities and might not finish completely.
Q: Will this be too hard for my child?
A: Our volunteers are there to help kids find an entry point into even the most difficult activities. We will also provide guidance on good places to start.
Q: Will this be too easy for my child?
Q: You haven’t met my child. He/she is a kind of math prodigy…
A: The problems they’ll encounter at this festival will be novel, and go to a depth that most students never see. There will even be some unsolved problems floating around. Challenge won’t be a problem.
Q: My child is not really into math. Is this for mathy kids only?
A: This festival is designed to appeal to a broad audience, not just those who identify as math lovers already. That said, please don’t force students who are not interested in coming to join us. If students are open to the idea of seeing a different side of math, we will do our best to show them what we think is beautiful, profound, and wonderful about the subject. This festival is for any student who comes to it with an open and curious mind.
Q: Can I take copies of all the problems home with me?
A: No, with exceptions. Your student may take copies of the problems they work on for a substantial quantity of time. Please don’t go from table to table and collect pages. If you would like problems from previous years, many are available at http://juliarobinsonfestival.org/problems.html
Q: How can I learn more about this festival?
A: For information about Julia Robinson Math Festivals around the country, go to http://juliarobinsonfestival.org
Q: Where to park?
A: You can park on the P1 level at Google, then use the bright green lobby and take the stairs up to D1 where the event takes place. Parking is free.
(For any other info, please send email to [email protected])