for the learning of mathematics

an international journal of mathematics education

Ami Mamolo - Vol. 37 Num. 3 (2017)
 April and the infinitely many ping pong balls


This story is a playful retelling of ideas related to infinity. Presented as a historical fiction, the story reflects the thinking of research participants who addressed the ping pong ball conundrum, and where indicated, the individuals who contributed to modern formal understandings of infinity. This story offers a way of engaging with questions, controversies, ideas, and beliefs related to infinity. The characters in the story are confronted with a situation that challenges the notion of an 'objective' truth. Through their musings, April and her friends stumble upon the contextually-dependent nature of mathematical truth and open the door to further conversation.