Journal of Math Circles

Biographical Sketch

Caroline Virden is a graduate student at Mississippi State University pursuing a Master of Science in Statistics. Ms. Virden assisted Drs. Dean and Bondurant with the Crazy 8s Math Club. Her interests include data modeling and helping students understand how mathematics relates to everyday life.

Lee Dean is an Associate Professor of Mathematics at Delta State University. With Dr. Bondurant, she coached the Crazy 8’s Math Club. From a research perspective, Dr. Dean is particularly interested in cooperative learning techniques and subject integration in all levels of mathematics.

Liza Bondurant is an Associate Professor at Mississippi State University. With Dr. Dean, she coached the Crazy 8’s Math Club. She also began and ran a Mississippi Delta Math Teachers’ Circle. Interested in improving the mathematical experiences of traditionally marginalized students, her research focuses on rehumanizing mathematics through embodied teaching and learning, the development of mathematics identity, and teacher development.


Many students experience math anxiety, which can harm mathematics achievement. Taking part in fun, hands-on, inquiry-based math activities has been shown to decrease student anxiety. For four semesters, we ran an after-school mathematics club at Presbyterian Day School in Cleveland, MS for students in grades 3-5. The activities and materials were supplied by Crazy 8s Math Club (a Bedtime Math company). In this manuscript, we share three specific activities that encouraged both student engagement and problem-solving skills. Then we discuss survey results from the Crazy 8s Math Club as they relate to lower student math anxiety.

Description of Program

The authors are members of the Mississippi Delta Math Teachers' Circle.