#Made4Math Monday #2 – Keep Calm & Math On

I’ve actually done a lot of crafty business over the last week or so, but this is all I have time to blog about, and that’s only because the draft’s been sitting here for a while.  Off to bed!  🙂

Project #1 – Keep Calm and Math On

Now, I think this is nifty.  Throughout the chaos of wedding planning, I needed to step back & try to relax quite often (natch), so naturally I became drawn to the Keep Calm and Carry On trend.  Since math can be a panicky subject for some kids, I thought they might appreciate this sign:

I made it using the Keep Calm-o-Matic, and I matched it to school colors.  (See mine here.)

To insert the pi, I opened up PowerPoint, typed in my π (there, now you can copy & paste it!), and matched the colors to what I was using on the website.

Matching the PPT colors to the site

I set my font size to 260, then took a screen shot, cropped it to about 150×150 pixels, and inserted it.  Despite trying varying combinations of font and crop size, it still came out looking a bit fuzzy in the image, but my printout turned out okay.  Your mileage may vary!

They also have symbols you can choose from, if you click on the crown, in case you don’t want to go to the trouble to match it up.  (For example, there’s a plus sign that would work better for younger audiences.)

Once you’re satisfied with it, you can save it, and they’ll give you a bit.ly link to it.  You can save the image (a PNG) or save a PDF version.  The PDFs will look wonky if you use your own image, so again, do so with caution.

Personally, the PNG (using their default dimensions) came out plenty big enough for me to print it out on some 8.5″ x 11″ cardstock.  Alas, my printer wasn’t up to the challenge of all of that blue, and I’m still waiting on the prints to show up (I had some big drama over my $3 prints at FedEx Office, don’t ask), so unfortunately I can’t show you the finished product, but I think you get the general idea.  I’m sure you folks will come up with plenty of neat ways to use this!

If you’d rather do something else with the font, you can download it here.

Lots more to come next week!  🙂

#Made4Math Monday #1

Made4Math Monday

I didn’t plan on jumping into these quite yet (we start training Wednesday and pre-planning on Friday, and given that all I know about my room at the moment is the number, there’s only so much I can do), but I realized that, while customizing my blog, I did something that others–particularly my fellow new teachers–might fight useful for their own blogs and twitter profiles.

Though I’m not completely happy with it yet, I made the background image for this blog myself using ColourLovers.  (I’m trying to match my school’s colors, but making an attractive combination of hunter green, navy, & gold is tricky!)  If you’re not familiar with it, ColourLovers is a site that lets you play with colors and palettes, and it lets you turn your palettes into patterns.

Using the green “Create” button on the right side, you can play with palettes first or jump straight into patterns.  They have all sorts of pre-made patterns to choose from:

I seriously could spend hours messing with this, there are so many options.

Once you have your pattern created and saved, you can click the pattern itself to see a larger version of it.

They used to give you a way to download a background-sized image of your pattern, but I don’t think they do that anymore.  (Either that, or I can’t find the link.)  In any case, you can take a screen shot of your pattern, crop it so that the edges line up neatly, et voilà, you have a background image for your blog, twitter account, or whatever else.

(If you’re not familiar with taking screen shots, it’s the “Print Screen” or “Prnt Scrn” key on a PC, which will take an image of your screen and put it on your clipboard.  You’ll have to paste it into some sort of image software.  Paint works in a pinch.  On a Mac, hit Cmd+Shift+4, then select what you need.  The image will be created on your deskop automatically.  If you need to trim it, open it in Preview, select what you want to keep, and hit Cmd+K.)

Since you’re using their website to create it, it’s courteous to link back to ColourLovers somewhere on your blog, such as on your “about” page.