Episode 1: Playful and joyful maths with Dr David Butler

Listen on the Maths Play site, Spotify or Youtube.

Dr David Butler is, among many things, a mathematician and lecturer at the University of Adelaide.

In this episode, David explains what it means to experience joyful and playful mathematics and happily shares inspiring stories from nearly 16 years of supporting students at the university Maths Learning Centre where he works

He treats us to a mini-round of a game he created that has well and truly sparked our curiosity. This episode is a wonderful resource for teachers and for anyone interested in positive and playful mathematics.

David's blog is Making Your Own Sense and you can follow him on social media: BlueSky I InstagramMathstodon I Twitter/X


Here are some direct links to blog posts and other things that were mentioned in this episode.

1. One Hundred Factorial & Art Projects at the MLC - link

2. Playful & Joyful Maths Keynote presentation (2017) - link

3. The Digit Disguises game - link

4. David's Day of Maths in a Year 6 class - link

5. Article about Stuart Brown's book about Play - link

6. Stuart Brown speaks about Play - link 

7. A blog post by David after reading Stuart Brown's book - link

Oh, and here's the dessert menu that David selected from - link


Thank you for listening to this podcast episode which is part of a seven part series airing in the lead up to the International Day of Mathematics which, in 2024, is celebrating the theme 'Playing with maths'.

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