Conversation Groups


The goal of the Conversation Groups is to achieve good practices about some specific aspects of popularization of mathematics in exhibitions, workshops, fairs… Furthermore, it can be very useful to discuss and identify problems, shortcomings, weaknesses and inspiring ideas we can detect in our frame of work.

The structure of the Conversation Groups is based on 5-10 short communications on the topic, so speakers and participants have enough time for discussion. Speakers’ full contributions will be available on this website.

All contributions will be compiled to be published in an electronic publication with an official ISBN code.

If you want to contribute as a speaker in a Conversation Group, you will find a form in the registration process (your talk will be announced HERE).

Monday, October 29th

CG1 We don’t teach, but they learn Museum/School

The learning models in a museum (exhibitions and workshops) are not the same than in school. Dynamics, time, relationship and communication are different.

We don’t teach. We make self-experience possible.

CG2 There are not small mathematics, there are not small mathematicians. Mathematics and children (0-8)

Mathematics experiences have to be intense, challenging, stimulating for teachers and students at all the educational steps. How can we support this goal from the museum?

CG3 Is virtual virtuous? Hands-on and virtual hands-on

The presence of technology in all social areas (school, home, relationships, information…) is continually increasing and gaining new competences. The math component is enormous and not always evident. Which and how much technology is needed in the museum? What is the purpose?

Tuesday, October 30th

CG4 Let’s do something together International Math Week

The popularization of mathematics through exhibitions, fairs, workshops or individual events is a widespread practice in many countries and that sees all of us involved. Is it time to organize collective actions, exchanging experiences and activities? Which models would allow us to break the barrier of silence?

CG5 Don’t be so formal! Museum/Teachers training

The initial and ongoing training of teachers is conducted in different ways in different countries, but it is difficult to see the entities that educate outside the formal circuit, from kindergarten to university, involved, even when the goal is skills based learning. Do we have alternative models to offer?

CG6 Mummy, I want to be a scientist! Museums and scientific vocation

Projects to stimulate STEM vocations are taking place in many countries, to compensate for the lack of professional figures and the demand for an increasingly technological industry. Museums are called to be interlocutors of these projects. What are our peculiarities? How can we measure (and claim) our impact and contribution?

CG7 In the museum and for the museum Statistics

The statistic (and probability) is a matter of mathematics that is more present in the social reality than within museums. Is it possible to develop meaningful modules that will allow us to increase the skills to better understand information and take better decisions?

On the other side, the museums use the property and efficiency of the instruments and the statistics predispose to evaluate the effectiveness and dimensions of their own social and educative skill?

CG8 Go wider, go deeper! Math/Museum/People Dissemination

In recent years, mathematical dissemination shows a greater social presence. Books, articles and interviews in newspapers and magazines, collections of games, some movies, fleeting but repeated television appearances … are more frequent. Can we take advantage of it to be able to impose a more realistic view of mathematics and mathematicians, beyond the easy stereotypes that persecute us?

CG9 Movement and emotion stimulate creActivity. In-E-motion

Simulations, applets, transforming shapes, puzzles, fractals, paths, strings… Dynamic images generate emotions and stimulate personal investigation.

Wednesday, October 31th

CG10 Banner at the exit of the museum: “You are now entering the real museum of mathematics”. Museum/Reality modelling

From a certain point of view, if we succeed that our educational discourse is focused on elements of daily life we can reach a greater, less expert, but no less curious audience.

From another point of view, reality is too complex to be contained in a single module. Modelling without losing the essential elements that we want to mathematise is the big bet.

CG11 Is the Big Data a Gentle Giant? Research/Statistics

BigData is breaking into world of statistics as a real challenge, but how can we convert this huge landscape into a museum hands-on module? We are able to use that technology in our benefit?

CG12 It’s easy! Well, it’s not so hard! I mean: it’s hard, but is fun! Support for new museum

Is it really so difficult and expensive to build a new mathematics museum? Which elements are essential? How to stimulate demand in the area?

CG13 Sharing is caring Sharing of exhibits ideas

In Dresden’s first Matrix conference, Imaginary proposed a collaboration protocol between mathematical museums. Although not formalized, a tacit agreement was in fact accepted and contributed to the realization of excellent collaborative experiences. With this baggage and more available connection channels, how can we widen and generalize such collaborations?

CG14 I had a lot of fun. I have a lot of questions Emotion vs Fun: A transforming museum

The emotional (hearts-on) and playful aspects play an essential role in determining the success of an exhibition, but hide the risk of trivializing content and objectives. We must promote a seductive science, which changes the commonly accepted view of mathematics and maintains this new interest for a long time.

CG15 Size doesn’t matter. Big or Great?

Does it make sense to discuss the ideal dimensions of a mathematics museum? Are we able to decide or suggest the best model or different models are equally possible and effective? Which elements are essential for a good activity?

CG16 How could I explain it to you? Museum/University

Popularization of theory advances in mathematics is an important social goal. Is the museum the right place to do it?