The Globe Celebrates the Common New Year


NumbersAlive! hopes you all have a wonderful transition from 2017 to 2018.

As 2018 begins, consider how the change in the year utilizes numbers in an understood global manner   How and why did this happen?  Many cultures have their own calendars, but the world celebrates the new year with the same numbering system.  Among the numbers 0-9, 8 is happy to replace 7, who hung on as long as possible as part of time’s name.  Like the US presidency, the transition should be smooth.   Numbers are part of every discipline/concept necessary for transforming young children into citizens

Geometry should be linked to numbers and our efforts to do so created Number Linx which was named the best invention of North America at the iCAN invited inventor conference in Toronto last August.

We are here to help all educators, parents and children understand what math is about and where it came from.   We are focused on such questions and embrace historic and forward-thinking fundamentals to make math meaningful and real.  Being everywhere you look we use actual photos, locations, quotes, etc. to demonstrate its usefulness.  We encourage learners of all ages to observe, discuss, design, create, and make math!  How and why were the systems we use today developed?


Happy Holidays –Celebrate as You Will







Celebrate As You Will

Winter’s often cold and snowy,
But winter holidays are always showy.

You might decorate a Christmas tree.
Or set a blaze of Chanukah lights.
Place clean boots for Santa on your porch,
Or pay respects at religious sites.

No holiday is better or best,
They are times for family, reflection, and rest.
No matter which holiday you call your own,
We hope it brings joy, more than you’ve ever known.

Although Christmas takes center stage in the United State, it’s not the only holiday Americans celebrate in December and January.

Christmas around the world

You all know that many Americans celebrate Christmas on December 25 by decorating a fine spruce, sharing a fine meal, and opening their first present either on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning.

But in Germany, Christmas revelers place clean boots by the front door on December 5 for Santa to fill with nuts, sweets, and small presents.

In Italy, kids eagerly await January 6, the day in ancient times when the three Wise Men arrived at Bethlehem and gave Jesus gold, incense, and myrrh. Today, Italian boys and girls believe a good old witch named “Befana,” leaves gifts for them.

Kwanzaa, created in the 1960s in response to racial strife in the U.S., celebrates the African American culture and community. The holiday’s seven days, which begin December 26 and end on January 1, centers around seven values – unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith. Each night, family and friends gather to light candles, feast, and talk about how each person can make the world a better place.


In early/mid December, Jews celebrate Chanukah by lighting a nine-candle the menorah, which symbolizes the miracle of faith. For eight nights, Jews light the menorah, exchange presents, and spin the dreidel, a gambling game for chocolate-covered coins called “gelt.”

Japanese New Year

It’s called ‘Omisoka,” and Japanese families celebrate it on December 31, the last day of the year. People clean their homes and remove clutter to welcome in the new year with a metaphorical clean slate. Family and friends feast together and often watch a nation-wide New Year’s talent competition until the countdown to midnight, when temples toll their bells.

If you have a copy of our The 12 Notes of Christmas, watch the entire film during the holidays that links each day 0 (Christmas Day) to 12 (Jan 6, Twelfth Night) as the numbers travel the world to create a musical band to celebrate Shakespeare’s 400+ legacy at the opening of Twelfth Night in the Globe Theatre.  Learn instrument design linked to the day 0-12 as well as history and holiday food in each global location.  Animated for kids and information for all ages.  The mashup of the 12 Days of Christmas song and Twelfth Night by Shakespeare takes its goal from Duke Orsino’s line from the play, “If music be the food of love, play on!”

Check out the shop to order a film as it is great for the entire holiday season.  The price is free but there is a $4.95 shipping charge for any total order.

Corresponding discussion questions are available at

Celebrate the holidays as you will!

Chanukah – The Festival of Lights and Numbers

Many call Chanukah the Festival of Lights;
Where lamp oil for one day, lasted many more nights.
It’s a miracle, they say, that one day turned to eight;
God’s great blessing and grace that changed Jewish fate.

At sundown on December 12, Jews around the world will begin the eight-day celebration of Chanukah.

Here’s a little history:

In the second century BC, a small band of faithful Jews in the Holy Land defeated a mighty army trying to force them to accept Greek culture. When the Jews reclaimed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, they attempted to light the temple’s seven-branch candelabrum, but found only one cruse of uncontaminated, ritual oil.

Miraculously, the menorah stayed lit for eight days, until more ritual oil could be produced. Chanukah celebrates that miracle and the Jewish heroes who fought to continue observing the Jewish faith and traditions.

Chanukah today
Today, Jews celebrate Chanukah by lighting the menorah, a candelabra that holds nine candles; eight for each day the holy oil lasted and one – the Shamash— to light the other candles. Each night of the holiday, Jews gather around the menorah, say a Hebrew prayer, and light one more candle until the entire menorah is ablaze on the last night of the holiday.

Chanukah activities celebrate the miracle. Jews eat fried foods to remind them of the holy oil, particularly fried potato pancakes called latkes and fried doughnuts filled with jelly called sufganya.

Presents are exchanged, and the dreidel, a four-sided top, is spun during a gambling game where Chanukah “gelt” (usually chocolate covered coins) is bet.

Each side of the dreidel contains a Hebrew letter that tells the spinner how much of the pot he’s won or lost.


Nun: Take nothing.

Nun: Take nothing.


Gimel: Take the whole pot.

Gimel: Take the whole pot.


Hey: Take half the pot.

Hey: Take half the pot.


Shin: Put another unit into the pot.

Shin: Put another unit into the pot.