Pita Cutting in Math Class by Danae

As the Greek tradition has, a pita is always cut in the beginning of the year as a sign of good luck for the one that gets the piece with the coin in it. The Pita is also known as Vasilopita that means the king’s pie. It is a New Year’s Day bread or cake in Greece and many other countries as well. In some traditions, including the Greek one there is a coin hidden in the cake. The one, who gets the piece with the coin, is usually given a good luck charm or a special gift. However, some also believe it brings luck for the year to come.

Before we cut the pita, Ms. Evloyias told us that we need to figure out how to cut the pita into equal pieces. Our first thought was to find out how many people we were, which was 19 with the teacher, but then we decided to add one more piece for the school. Then our second thought was to measure the length and width of the pita. We took a ruler and measured the length of the pita, which came to be 36 cm and the width was 22 cm. Then we took our white boards and we drew a model with how we would cut the pita to have equal pieces. We drew arrays and all the groups decided that the best way to do it was to have 4 by 5 arrays. Then each group had to find out what they needed to do to split the pieces into equal parts. We estimated 36cm to 35cm and 22cm to 20cm. After estimating we divided the 35 by 5 and got 7. So we took our ruler and marked every 7cm, so we know where to cut the pieces. We followed the same process with the width, 20 divided by 4 and got 5. So, we split the pieces every 5 cm. However, we did not finish here. We still had to find out what fraction of the pita the coin would be in. We knew we had 20 pieces and the coin would be in one, so we came up with the fraction of 1/20. It was a great experience and having to do the math was actually really fun.

In conclusion, Ms. Evloyias took our calculations and helped us cut the pita. As we were waiting to get the pieces, it smelled like we were in a sweet shop. The scents of the vanilla and orange were making us hungry. We decided that if someone finds the coin he or she would not tell, until everyone got a piece. Ellie T was the lucky one that got the coin in our class and she was also given a little gift. Of course when we tried the pita it was very scrumptious. We would like to give a big thank you to Ms. Evloyia’s Dad for baking the pitas for us and to Anna B for her beautiful poem! All three classes enjoyed eating them!!!!

PicCollage (2) PicCollage PicCollage (1)

4 thoughts on “Pita Cutting in Math Class by Danae

  1. Dear Danae,
    You explained the process to cut the pieces in great detail and very clearly. It think if someone was absent on that day they would understand exactly what happened. In our class we didn’t measure the length or width but we also cut the 20 pieces the way you did and I figured out that we would each have a 5% chance of getting the coin. In the end, Thomas got the coin and the good luck! The cake was delicious and I enjoyed that day a lot! Thank you to Ms. Evloyias’ Dad for baking the cakes!

  2. Dear Danae,
    I really liked your description. You were exact with the measurements and put all the detail. It was exciting to do math and cut the pita. I’m glad you shared our class experience with the rest of the fifth graders. Reading it made me feel that I was living it again.

    Your Friend,

  3. Dear Danae,
    I really enjoyed your story. I think you were exact with all the things that you wrote. I also liked how you put the picture with the class and the pita! I can’t wait until you post another story on the blog! 🙂
    Ellie T

  4. Dear Danae,

    I really liked what you wrote. When I read it, I felt like the day was happening again! It was a great day and we had fun learning math.

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