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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi (A Math Adventure)
Format: Paperback|Change
Price:$7.95+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on January 26, 2012
This is a fun and entertaining book that introduces the concept of Pi to younger readers. I actually purchased it as a door prize for my annual 'Pi Day' celebration (yes, I'm a huge nerd when it comes to Pi). The girl who ended up winning it was the 4th-grade daughter of a friend who wasn't all that thrilled in receiving that as a gift (I mean, how about something cool like a video game, or at least candy?!?). However, they later told me that their daughter had enjoyed reading it. Further, she took it to school and the teacher read it to the class and they had both enjoyed it and discussed the concept of Pi as well. I also got another copy to read with my kids and my 4 year-old (an aspiring Pi nerd herself) enjoyed the story and the introduction to what the ratio means--so mission accomplished along those fronts.

Of course, given my huge affinity for Pi, I had to dock it one star because the book states throughout the story that Pi can be calculated as 22/7 (or '3 and a seventh'). While this is certainly a rudimentary approximation, it is by no means an exact calculation (irrational and transcendental, anyone?). It's not until the last page (after the story is over) that it says that "the part to the right of the decimal point is 'about' a seventh". While I realize that the 22/7 simplification is a conceit to make it more accessible to younger readers, it still bugs me every time I read it with my kids. So one star off for pain and suffering :-).
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on June 10, 2014
Having prepared myself for rejection, ready for rebuke for shoving math down her throat, I was rather amazed how my almost 8-year old granddaughter took to these books. Illustrations are nothing special, but effective. The child loves the punny names of all the characters. I now think she'll understand the concepts radius, diameter, circumference, pi, for the rest of her life.

The child is only just beginning to learn her 2x, 3x multiplication tables, but she became so good after reading this book at thinking of circles in terms of Pi = Circumference divided by Diameter, I somewhat regretted that Knights of Angleland used angle measurements in degrees instead of radians. A missed opportunity. Because of this book, perhaps the first mathematical formula she truly understands is Circumference (read: Sir Cumference) = 2(Pi)(Radius) or (Pi)(Diameter). Using radians (Radius is Sir Cumference's son) as the angle measurement would both prepare kids for basic trig and allow for endless punning opportunities. Oh well ... maybe later in the series after old Sir Degrees passes away ...

Even so, she liked it a lot more than I expected and it taught the material well. Hit right in her wheelhouse for reading level and just a hair ahead of her in math, though it's given her an incentive (among several) to learn her multiplication tables, which have been met with less resistance than one might suspect. She's voraciously read Dragons of Pi, Knights of Angleland, and the First Roundtable, all at least twice, this one four times, at least, so we're going to try a couple more.

For me as an adult, I almost went with four stars because the illustrations aren't particularly inspiring. But based on how elegantly it treats the subject matter and the impressive reaction from my focus group of one, on her behalf I'll go with five. I wasn't expecting Sir Cumference to become a house favorite, but lately there always seems to be a copy near the top of the stack.
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on April 14, 2017
Such a cute math story! It was a great addition to our Pi day activities!
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on October 15, 2012
I used this book for teaching my Kindergarten Students the reasoning of Pi. It was well written and for the little ones; 5 and 6 year olds they were able to understand it. I also, segmented the book so that I could demonstrate the math behind it using repeated subtraction on Chart Paper. This made the visualization of the text meaningful to them. Then, included this in my Parent Newsletter so parents would know how to explain these concepts to their children, plus tell them that there are other math concept books available to help children comprehend math concepts, not just learn them but be able to apply them.
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on February 9, 2017
This book is an excellent way of teaching the concept of Pi. I struggled to learn that in school, and never fully understood what it was until I read this book at 37 years old! I know now that I will never forget it again. My teachers should have used resources like these and might have had a much easier time in math. My kids will have the benefit of these books and I recommend them to anyone who wants to break out of the box of boring old textbooks and find a creative and memorable way to teach their kids/students math.
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on March 24, 2000
A young boy gives his father the wrong potion to cure a bellyache, and must solve the riddle of the ratio of a circle's circumference to it's diameter to get the dosage to cure him. I enjoyed the fun names (Geo and Sym, the Metry brothers), but I was disappointed in the author's choice to use 22/7 as the value for pi. If the story hadn't made such a big point of getting the dose correct (or Dad would never be cured), I wouldn't have had any trouble with introducing an approximate value.
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on October 22, 2017
Grateful for the item. Well done.
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on November 15, 2004
Radius has to discover PI in order to save his father, Sir cumference from the evil curse of the fire breathing Dragon. I read this book to a fourth grade class and they really got a kick out of it. They wanted to learn pie along with Radius through his adventures to conquer the curse. This is a creative way to introduce a math lesson to children. There is even places to stop and let the kids try a couple problems. The activities include measuring and dividing. Teachers this is a must have.
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on September 25, 2010
I absolutely love the Sir Cumference series and was delighted to add yet another book to our collection. These books are well written to tell a great story for younger children, and the older children can uncover great mathematical concepts as they listen to the explanation and work through the problem as well. The books all include a practical view of the mathematical concept as well (at the end of the story).I would definitely recommend this book as well as the others fromt he series:
 Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi (A Math Adventure)
Sir Cumference and the First Round Table (A Math Adventure)
Sir Cumference and All the King's Tens: A Math Adventure
Sir Cumference and the Great Knight of Angleland (A Math Adventure)
Sir Cumference and the Isle of Immeter (Math Adventures)
Sir Cumference and the Sword in the Cone: A Math Adventure
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on February 13, 2016
The Sir Cumference books are great for kids interested in math. My 8yo son, who loves math, devours these, though my 8yo daughter who is not interested in math, finds these uninteresting as well. But they teach concepts in a really great, fun way.
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