The Mathematical Tweet Beat

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I was a twitter skeptic for a very long time. And now my love affair with twitter is so deep, it’s hard to even remember what my reservations were in the first place. I first joined in 2013, compelled by my hard-tweeting cohort of the AAAS Mass Media Fellowship. And what I discovered was the most pleasant online community of mathematicians and educators chatting all day about…well, math and education!

I get some of my best lesson plan ideas from Twitter, I learn about new math research papers, I get links to every possible math blog in the universe, and perhaps most relevant to you, I get all of my ideas for this blog. So I wanted to take this week to tell you about some of my favorite math tweeters and hashtags.

So first things first, a few hashtags to get you on your way.

This week the MAA hosted the #loveyourmath challenge. Tweeters posted on a different topic each day of the week, including, favorite math puzzles, proudest math moments, and mathematical arts and crafts. I didn’t find the challenge itself particularly inspiring, but if you’re new to the medium, it’s a good introduction to the mathematical twittersphere.

When I’m looking for fun problems and puzzles, I love to peruse the tweets on #mathchat. It tends to skew more towards K-12 teachers, but there are fantastic videos and links to technology and lesson ideas that I would never otherwise find.

Now on to people. At the very least, you can follow the big mathematical societies. I frequently check in with the AMS, the MAA and the AWM to see what they’ve found on the internet in a given week.

If you’ll forgive the blatant log rolling, my co-blogger Evelyn Lamb maintains a highly entertaining twitter account. She also wrote about her favorite mathy ladies on twitter for her blog at Scientific American several years about.

Mathematicians and tweeters John Allen Paulos and Marcus du Sautoy were listed among Science Magazine’s top 50 science stars of twitter. Other top mathematicians who tweet are Steven Strogatz, Laura Albert McLay, Matt Parker and Hannah Fry, to name just a few.

Some of my favorite math tweets over the years have also come from the collective hive mind behind The Aperiodical: Christian Perfect, Peter Rowlett, and Katie Steckles.

Finally, there are accounts that are dedicated to spitting out intermitted math facts just when you need them most. Like Algebra Fact, Prime Numbers and the not exactly mathematical but still fun in a mathy sort of way, Wolfram|Alpha Can’t.

So here are just a few ideas to get your started. Happy tweeting!

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