Fibonacci |

The Fibonacci number sequence is named after Leonardo of Pisa (1175-1240), who was known as Fibonacci. (I love to say that name because it sounds like I know a foreign language.) In mathematics, Fibonacci numbers are this sequence of numbers:

As you can see, it is a pattern, (all math is based on patterns). Can you figure out the number that follows 89? Okay, let's pretend I waited for at least 60 seconds before giving you the answer….144. By definition, the first two numbers in the Fibonacci sequence are 0 and 1, and each subsequent number is the sum of the previous two. For those who are still having difficulty (like my daughter who is sitting here), it is like this.

- The 8 is found by adding the two numbers before it (3 + 5)
- Similarly, 13 is found by adding the two numbers before it (5 + 8),
- And the 21 is (8 + 13), and so on!

**Can you figure out the next few numbers?**

The Fibonacci sequence can be written as a "Rule “which is:

*x*_{n}**=**The terms are numbered from 0 forwards as seen in the chart below.*x*_{n-1}+*x*_{n-2 }*x***is the term number n.**_{n}*x*_{n-1}**is the previous term (n-1) and***x***is the term before that (n-2)**_{n-2 }
Sometimes scientists and mathematicians enjoy studying patterns and relationships because they are interesting, but frequently it's because they help to solve practical problems. Number patterns are regularly studied in connection to the world we live in so we can better understand it. As mathematical connections are uncovered, math ideas are developed to help us be aware of the relationship between math and the natural world.

As stated previously, we come across Fibonacci numbers almost every day in real life. For instance, my husband and I were at the Wonders of Wildlife Aquarium in Springfield, Missouri. (If you haven't been, you should go because it is spectacular.) He was noticing how the herrings were swimming counter clockwise and discussing the Coriolis effect with the guide. When we got to the lower levels, where the sharks were, they were all swimming in a counterclockwise direction as well. I asked my rocket scientist husband why this was and again he said, with a straight face, "The Coriolis Effect."

Inside of a Nautilus Shell |

Are you still not sure what I am talking about? Have you ever watched the Disney movie entitled

*Donald in Mathmagic Land*? (It's an old one that

The Golden Ratio |

As I close, here are four questions to think about:

- How might knowing this number pattern be useful?
- What kinds of things can the numbers in the Fibonacci sequence represent?
- Where is the Golden Ratio found in the human body?
- Why is the golden rectangle important in architecture and art?