Mathematicians around the world celebrate International Pi Day on 14 March each year. The mathematical constant pi (π) represents the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. Pi’s unique properties and its importance in mathematics and science make it an auspicious number that has been celebrated throughout history. And what better way to celebrate than with a pi(e) baking competition?
At Oxford, we absolutely love a good competition, so put the challenge to our staff to enter their homemade masterpieces into our first ever Pi(e) Baking Competition. A few were lucky enough to be selected as judges, getting first bites of each entry. Pies were scored on taste, appearance, overall presentation, and importantly, how mathematics was used in their creation. Everyone then got a chance to taste each pie too – a delicious way to celebrate any day in our books!
As staff enjoyed the sweet and savoury treats, we shared laughs and memories of our experiences with mathematics at school. From childhood blunders to clever mathematical observations, we were reminded that maths can be both challenging and amusing.
The highlight of the day however was undoubtedly the pi(e) baking competition. There were pies of all shapes and sizes – from the classic and hearty chicken and mushroom, to gluten free berry, to delicious peppermint tart pies decorated with mathematical symbols.
After much deliberation (and tasting), judges decided on the winners: first place went to a moreish banoffee pie, second place went to the gluten-free (but by no means flavour-free) berry pie, and third place went to to a wholesome chicken and mushroom pie.
In the end however, everyone who participated was a winner. We were able to share in the joy of baking and our love of maths, and we got to enjoy some truly delicious pies in the process.
So here’s to pi, to maths, and to the joy of baking – may we continue to celebrate them all for many more years to come!
#PiDay #Mathisfun #OUPSA #Pie #Dessert