Can You Spot the Maths Behind the Magic?

Maths Magician Martin Duffy will be travelling to schools and colleges to encourage the discovery and enjoyment of maths using hands-on exhibits and related activities. "The trouble with maths in school is that students and teachers are working hard to prepare for an exam, and the real fun of maths does not get a chance to come out," says Martin, who specialises in turning maths into entertainment.

"Many of the maths experiments that students do in class can be translated into magic tricks with just a little imagination. What some teachers have done is to ask students to research the forces at play in different maths experiments and come up with ways to present them as magic."

Watch any magician at work, from Paul Daniels to David Blaine, and you are watching maths experiments in action. Even mind magicians such as Derren Brown are using a knowledge of biology when they read people's body language and behaviour to predict their thoughts. More traditional, rabbit-in-the-hat magicians exploit their knowledge of the laws of physics and chemistry to amaze audiences.

In his Maths Magic show Martin takes some basic mathematical principles and turns them into spectacles of trickery. All the old staples of the magician are explained by a little maths, cleverly applied. "There's a lot of talk about making maths fun, but I think maths is fun all by itself," says Martin.

His school tours are part of a growing awareness that maths needs a change of image - fast.

Feedback from Tracy Webley - Assistant Headteacher at Springwell Park Primary School, Merseyside

"I booked Martin Duffy for World Maths Day.  He was fantastic. 
I wanted a 'WOW' factor and I definitely got it with him. Children and staff were so enthralled with his activities.
It was a delight to watch him in action."


KS1 Age 5-7, KS2 Age 7-11, KS3 Age 11-13, KS4 Age 14-16, KS5 Age 16-18


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