Mathematical Moments

Welcome to the home page of the FAU Math Circle for middle and high school students. The main purpose of the circle is to have fun with mathematics, while learning something in the process. We will be solving problems, having friendly competitions, playing mathematical games. Links to information about past sessions, as well as other information, can be found on the navigation panel on the left. The high school component is new and begins with the October 7 session.

It is important to emphasize that a Math Circle is not a class, or a lecture, or a talk. We would like students to form groups of two or three and work together. Parents/teachers are welcome to stay but we would prefer that they sit in the back and let the students work on their own. Some problems may be a bit too difficult for some students, we have kids of varying ages and varying scholarly backgrounds; you shouldn't be discouraged if things are too difficult. You'll catch up. We hope however there will be something for everyone. Otherwise there are no fixed rules. Students can get up, walk about, write on the whiteboards (we provide markers). There are, of course, no grades , and no pressure. We will hold a competition, with prizes, during the last session of the semester.

To keep this circle as useful as possible, it is important to have feedback from participants and parents and teachers of participants. Don't be shy, let us know what you think. What can we do to improve it? An occasional word of praise will keep us going strong, but constructive criticism can be more important.

The Sessions

The way we will organize the sessions will vary. The high school and middle school sessions will be in separate (though adjacent) rooms. In both sessions students will work on problems that we hope will be both challenging and fun to solve, and that something will be learned by solving them. There will be a common thread to several of the session's problems but even when the main concepts of the day are not geometrical, there will always be a few geometry problems. The questions and the answers of each session will be posted once the session is over with a link in the navigation panel at the left. We hope students missing a session or two will look at the posted material and work through it, so that we can keep on building as we move along.

Source of the Problems    As usual, the majority of problems will come from very diverse sources, old AMC competitions, the Moscow Math Circle Problem book, historical sources (for example Fibonacci's Liber Abaci), etc. A few will be made up by us. Sources will not always be credited, but will be revealed upon request.

All middle school sessions will be held in PS 112 on the Boca campus from 2:30 to 4PM, except for the November 18 session that will be held on the Honor's College campus in Jupiter. The high school sessions will be held at the same times and dates, but in PS 113. Parking for all sessions at the Boca campus will be in the blue area of Parking lot 4. "FAU, Parking lot 4" is a recognized Google Maps location. Just in case, I am posting linked to the navigation panel on the left two maps copied from Google, showing how to get to lot 4 from the westernmost Glades Rd. entrance, and the location of the PS building with respect to lot 4.

  • Saturday September 23
  • Saturday October 7
  • Saturday October 28
  • Saturday November 4
  • Saturday November 18 (in Jupiter)
  • Saturday december 9

Contact Information Please address your questions or suggestions to:

Professor Tomas Schonbek
Department of Mathematical Sciences
Florida Atlantic University
Boca Raton, FL 33431


The organizers

Apart from Professor Schonbek, the Math Circle at FAU would not be able to function without the help of the following people who are generously giving of their time and efforts. In strict alphabetical order of their last names, they are: