Trail of the Month: Un paseo pirata matemático
Our new Trail of the Month is located in Alcobendas, Spain. The trail in the town north of Madrid has been frequently used in teacher practice, as shown by the high number of more than 230 downloads. It was created by José Fernández de la Cigoña and Isabel Docampo for presenting MathCityMap during the Spanish mes de las matemáticas (month of mathematics; click here for the website and here for our report on the project).
In the following interview, José Fernández de la Cigoña highlights the use of the MathCityMap pirate narrative and introduces her trail “Un paseo pirata matemático por el Jardín de La Vega”.
The following article was published in May 2021. Why we present it again?
José Fernández de la Cigoña and Isabel Docampo have since written a journal article about the trail and the MathCityMap pirate narrative, which can be accessed online here.
How do you get in contact with MathCityMap?
We got in touch with MathCityMap by the Spanish website Marzo, mes de las matemáticas from whom we were asked to prepare a trail to contribute to the month of mathematics. So, we looked for some information, signed up for the MathCityMap MOOC and started creating on our trail. We aim at a broad revision of learned topics, mainly geometry but also divisibility, probability or proporcionality, among others.
Our students in school have already worked on the trail! In fact, we are a little surprised by the high number of downloads of our trail by other users.
Please describe your trail.
Our trail is placed in a park in Alcobendas, a city close to Madrid. The website Marzo, mes de las matemáticas guided us on the kind of tasks we could look for, and one great characteristic of this trail is that most of the tasks can be easily recreated in any city around the world [so-called Generic Tasks]. The special attribute of this trail lies in a story connecting all the tasks, a sort of pirate adventure based on the MathCityMap pirate narrative.
Please sketch one of your tasks. What is the mathematical question? How could you solve it?
The most inventive task in our trail is “La batalla final” (The final battle). It is located on a playground where you can find a pirate ship. The aim of the task is to find the probability of hitting the ship if you fire a cannon. So it’s about probability and geometry since you need to evaluate the ship area and the area of the playground to know the probability.
Why do you use the pirate narrative. What are its benefits?
Since we have been developed a pirate story, it seemed so natural to use the pirate narrative. In fact, this narrative inspired us to create the story.