Body Measures

by Brunetto Piochi

Department of Mathematics, University of Florence, Italy


The Body Measures activity is related to measure and to some themes from arithmetic (ratios and proportions) and statistics (mean, median, correlation…). Due to how the two partners structured and piloted it, the activity can also be used to suggest an approach to pupils to themes from history of sciences and can as well be used as an introduction to computing by pc and to representing measures on a graph. Trainees are asked to make some measurements of their bodies (height, weight, length of arms, etc.). Some arithmetical or statistical computations are made using these measurements, with the aid of EXCEL software, while looking for meaningful ratios or correlations, which can also be related to Leonardo da Vinci’s hypotheses on the anatomy of human body. Similar activities will be performed with pupils and the results of their piloting will be afterwards discussed with trainees.

“Leonardo studies the proportions of the human body and its commensurability with the perfect geometric forms (the circle and the square). This was scientific analysis that had both cosmological meanings (the correspondence between micro-and macrocosm) and artistic ones (correctly representing the human figure and designing architecture based on the proportions of the human body). In this famous drawing from Venice, Leonardo subjected the ‘Vitruvian man’ to a series of original development.”

From the exhibition “La mente di Leonardo” held in Florence on September 2006

Main Piloting
by Brunetto Piochi

Second piloting
by Yves Alvez, Jean-François Chesné, Marie-Hélène Le Yaouanq
and Jacques Lubczanski, Hélène Gastin, Bernard Chareyre
Institut Universitaire de Formation des Maîtres – IUFM of Créteil, France

Third piloting (at Skårup Seminarium) and conclusion
by Brunetto Piochi

This page comes from the LOSSTT-IN-MATH Project website