Math Wonderland is a museum of interactive mathematical models in Hokkaido, Japan, founded by one of the authors, Jin Akiyama, in 2003. The models in Wonderland, many of which have been exhibited all over Japan and in cities around the world, are meant to help children and young adults discover and experience the wonders of mathematics.This book is centered around the experiences of three fictional middle-school students during a visit to Wonderland. They spend a day in Wonderland, handling the interactive models and participating in the activities offered there. At the end of the day, they leave with a genuine appreciation of mathematics gained from witnessing its beauty, applicability and inevitability.The book is an important contribution to the genre because it presents mathematics and models that have never before appeared in books in the same category: reversible solids, plane tiling with developments of tetrahedrons, and double-packable solids, which are derived from the authors' own research papers published in mathematics journals. It is designed to entertain, inform and even teach some mathematics. Although it is targeted at young adults, parents and teachers may learn something from the book as well.
Jin Akiyama is Professor of Mathematics and Director of the Research Institute of Educational Development of Tokai University in Tokyo, Japan. His mathematics lecture series have been aired on NHK Educational Television since 1991. Math Wonderland is his creation and the mathematical models there evolved from those used in his television series. His publications are in discrete geometry, graph theory and mathematics education.Mari-Jo Ruiz is Professor of Mathematics and Trustee of Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. She is a past president of the Southeast Asian Mathematical Society (SEAMS), an association of the mathematical societies of eight Southeast Asian countries. Her areas of interest are graph theory and operations research. She has won several national awards for teaching excellence.Both authors were members of the Organizing Committee of the UNESCO-sponsored traveling exhibition Experiencing Mathematics , first shown in Denmark on the occasion of ICME 10 in 2004. Both are also involved in the publication of the journal Graphs and Combinatorics, he as Editor-in-Chief and she as a member of the Editorial Board.