Apr 072017
 

A few days late, but I just can’t resist a good April Fools’ Day prank – and Math & Computer Science professor Matthew Weathers of Biola University in California has honed his pranks to a fine art-form! 

He began about 7 years ago using a Halloween prank to liven up his lesson, but decided that they’re better suited as an April Fools’ Day joke.  And he has really become a master. 

The class starts as any typical college math class does.  (zzzzzzz)  And like most teachers, he frequently uses a video screen for a lesson.  But for Prof. Weathers, the screen morphs into his stage – and before you know it, things escalate rapidly when a twin “Professor” in the video starts interacting with the real one!

Sometimes he’s in front of the screen, and sometimes he goes “inside the screen” to “become” a part of the video itself.

Weathers explained that he uses Adobe Premiere along with Adobe After Effects to create the video skits.  And as one can imagine, he admits he spends a great deal of time practicing to ensure everything works perfectly to get the joke across.

"I practiced about 20 times to get the timing right."  And he admits he learned to add audio cues to the video because “that helped a lot" – especially when he’s behind the screen.

So let’s see him in action, noting that as the years went by he became more elaborate with his creative skits:

2014 – The Quickest Way to Buy a Book from Amazon

2015 – Getting Trigonometry Wrong

2016 – His Internet Connect Goes Haywire

2017 – His Video Screen Has an “Accident”

Not only has he been written up in Time magazine – but he’s even made a serious video demonstrating how he MAKES his videos.

You can view all his videos here:

https://www.youtube.com/user/MDWeathers

It almost makes you wish you were back in a college math class with a professor this fun … ALMOST!

 

 

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  7 Responses to “Friday Fun – Making Math Fun … No Fooling!”

    • Wow – that IS fun!  I took a lot of math in college, and I promise, it was never that fun.  I was considering a major in it, but one term I took two courses, mixed up the times of the finals, so studied for the second final twice but the first not at all, and ended up with the same grade in both courses.  This suggested that my math studying was not very productiive, so I took my study endeavors elsewhere.

  1. Pretty awesome videos!!

    Yea, wish I had had a Math teacher that made the classes fun like this.

    Thank you, Nameless for post, and Joanne for cross posting.

  2. Very cool, Nameless!  Very, very cool!!!

    I did not take university math but I did take calculus, algebra, geometry and trig right through grade 13 (then it was equivalent to 1st year university).  It was NEVER this much fun though.  I think the most fun I ever had in math was in grade 11 when I almost was kicked out of class.  Fortunately the teacher, Mr Capellani, decided to see what all the noise was at the back of the class where I sat.  When he saw what was happening, he told me to keep the noise down.  I was tutoring Robert, the fellow behind me.  He went from failing math to getting a B+.

  3. It's obvious math in itself is neither fun to teach nor to be taught, so a creative spirit like Math & Computer Science professor Matthew Weathers will take an opportunity like April Fool's Day to jazz things up a bit. And boy, does he do that brilliantly or not! He certainly has turned it into a fine art form, and a tradition too. I bet his classes are overcrowded around April 1st, and not just with math students.

    Thank you for this very enjoyable article, Nameless. Wish my young and enthusiastic math teacher had these tools to work with in my time. There's nothing like a little humor to make a dull course more attractive.

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