“Jen, can we have class outside today?” This was music to my ears! Miles wanted to have Pre-calculus class outside since it was snowing. While every other school in Transylvania County cancelled or called an early dismissal, the students at The Outdoor Academy embraced the weather. I responded to Miles, “Sure. Snow is very mathematical, you know.”
The Fractal Foundation defines a fractal as “infinitely complex patterns that are self-similar across different scales.” A special type of fractal is a Koch Snowflake. This fractal starts as an equilateral triangle. With each iteration of the pattern, the object becomes more and more like a snowflake. You could say a snowflake is a natural example of the Koch Snowflake fractal. Other examples of fractals patterns in nature include trees, mountain ranges, lightning, and coastal lines.
I am excited to have the world as my classroom and students who are excited about that too. I learn more about the connection between math and nature every time I venture out into the forest or up in the mountains. How cool that you can see the laws of math everywhere! Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!