Saint Mary's College

The Moraga Math Circle

The Moraga Math Circle is an enrichment program for middle school students with strong mathematical skills and interests. We meet most Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:00pm in Galileo 105 on the campus of Saint Mary's College.
We believe we can help prepare our children to become the scientists, mathematicians and engineers of tomorrow by making mathematics part of their recreational and social activities today. Far from the rote tedium it can sometimes be, when properly introduced mathematics is an excellent playground for practicing abstract thought, creativity, communication, cooperation, and innovation. Our program fosters a non-competitive inquisitive environment to stimulate children's innate mathematic abilities to expand and maintain children's mathematical intuition.
Our math circle consists of middle school students and teachers who meet generally weekly to discuss and do mathematics that is beyond the usual school curriculum. The sessions are based on student-led conversation in which we propose, discuss and critique 'solutions', or partial solutions, to the question at hand. (If you write out all the numbers from 1 to 333,333, how many 0's will you use?) While at first glance it may seem unrealistic to expect a group of middle school students to solve such a question, but with an occassional judicious suggestion ("how about between 1 and 100? 101 and 200?"), interested students are capable of surprising analytical work. Formally mathematics, our goal is to encourage careful thinking and fruitful conversation about an intellectually challenging questions.
Most importantly, our session are fun!