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Exploring cultural connections with mathematics

Have you ever danced with numbers, listened to what shapes say, or heard blocks sing?

2014-Barta-Jim-webmugJim Barta, interim dean of Bemidji State University’s College of Health Sciences and Human Ecology, offers a hands-on opportunity to examine the mathematics we teach from a cultural perspective as part of BSU’s Honors Council Lecture Series.

Barta will share insight into the connection between mathematics and cultures through exploration of cultural artifacts representing various American Indian cultures. Participants will leave his presentation with a new relationship with mathematics, and teachers will leave knowing better how to help their students see the relevance and beauty of the math.

About Jim Barta
Barta, who has been at BSU since August 2013, has been involved in education for nearly 35 years with a special interest in culturally responsive mathematics. For the past decade, he has worked to implement international professional development in mathematics for teachers emphasizing the role of culture in teaching and learning, especially related to indigenous populations. He authored a book titled “Math Examples and Classroom Activities From Around the World” which will be published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics this fall.

Lecture information
James Barta, interim dean of Bemidji State University’s College of Health Sciences and Human Ecology, presents “Connecting Math and Cultures in the Classroom” as part of BSU’s Honors Council Lecture Series.

Barta’s lecture will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 2, in Hagg-Sauer Hall 112 on the BSU campus. Honors Council lectures are open to the public free of charge.

The Honors Council Lecture Series is hosted by the Bemidji State University Honors Council. The council is the advisory group to the honors program comprised of 12 faculty members from each of the University’s colleges. Student representatives are also elected to the council by their cohorts for one-year terms.

Kari Caughey, BSU honors program; (218) 755-3984
James Barta, interim dean, College of Health Sciences and Human Ecology; (218) 755-2965

About Bemidji State University Bemidji State University, located in northern Minnesota’s lake district, occupies a wooded campus along the shore of Lake Bemidji. Enrolling more than 5,000 students, the University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and nine graduate programs encompassing arts, sciences and select professional programs. The University is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system and has a faculty and staff of more than 550. University signature themes include environmental stewardship, civic engagement and global and multi-cultural understanding. For further information about the University, visit Become a fan of Bemidji State University on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.