Session leader: Sam Vandervelde
Session title: Full Brain Workout
ABSTRACT: The first portion of our afternoon session will feature `prickly primes’ and immerse us in the world of algebra and number theory. Following in the footsteps of Euler, our primary goal will be to prove the existence of infinitely many of these sorts of primes, although we will encounter several other nice results from elementary number theory along the way. After this triumph, we will take a short break and then turn to the quite different field of knot theory, in which we will seek to adapt the invariant polynomial provided by the Kauffman bracket in the hopes of producing an elementary knot invariant that can distinguish left and right handed trefoil knots.
BIO: Sam Vandervelde is the Head of School and Dean of Mathematics at Proof School, a full curriculum day school in San Francisco serving students who love math from throughout the Bay Area. He was previously the chair of the math department at St.Lawrence University, where he taught for eight years. Prior to this stint he spent several years situated near Stanford; during this time he launched the Stanford Math Circle, helped to create the organization that runs Math Teacher Circles, and wrote Circle in a Box, a handbook for math circle leaders.
Please RSVP at this link. Thanks! We look forward to seeing you there.