A Quote to Start Things Off

"Passive Aggressive. It works for my mother, it works for Duolingo" Luis Von Ahn , co-founder of Duolingo from his TED talk, How to make learning as addictive as social media.

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Pictures of Memories I
Snow kidding! These "kids" now range from 17 to 23

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Playful Math Carnival #164

 Welcome to the 164th edition of the Playful Math Education Carnival 

I am Dave your host for this month.   This is my first time hosting this carnival and I'm not quite sure what I'm doing.  But in true growth mindset lingo, I don't know what I'm doing yet.  As Dr. Teeth says in The Muppet Movie, "There ain't nothin' to it but to do it."

Thanks to the incomparable Denise Gaskins for giving me a chance to host.  Before we get into gear just a little bit more about me ...

I started this blog 14 years ago back when I was a home educator and this blog was named Home School Dad.  During that time I was a frequent participant and host of the Carnival of Homeschooling.  I loved that carnival and especially loved hosting it.  I also loved all the great math ideas I would see in Blogs like Denises.  

When I was a home educator, I would often teach math games classes at our local home school cooperative.  5 years ago when I became a substitute teacher I would love to see all the great ideas that the teachers I was subbing for and all the wonderful resources that are out there.  

This winter I became a building sub in my district.  When I'm not in for another teacher I go from class to class and am an extra set of hands, this usually will happen during Math and ELA instruction and I was hoping to share a lot of the games and activities the teachers use in today's post.

Unfortunately, almost immediately into the semester I started subbing for the P.E. teacher for almost 2 months, and now I'm subbing in a special-ed classroom for the rest of the year, so I haven't gleaned as many ideas as I hoped I would. I think though I have assembled some good stuff for this month's edition.  So let's give it a go. 

Remembering Our Past

Big shout out to 1001 Math Problems for hosting Carnival # 163

She began by telling us some info about the number 163 so I'll start by giving you a little info about 164.

164 hours is about a week.  In fact, if you take 164 hours  (6 days 20 hours) and add  164  minutes (2 hours 44 minutes then add  164 seconds  (2 minutes 44 seconds)  you would have a total of  6 days 22 hours 46 minutes and 44 seconds which would be approximately 1:15 minutes less than a week.

164 is what I call an A square B number.  It is the product of 41 times 2 squared. 

164 is the 22nd A squared B number. 

Numbermatics has some more information on good old 164 entitled  Number 164 - Facts about the integer

How Many Days Have I Lived?

Here is an idea I use as a parlor trick but have also been bringing into the classroom. This can be done on the whiteboard or smart board with one individual or you could have each student do it on their own whiteboard, paper, or computer

First, have the student write their date of birth month date, and year.

Our example student was born ten years ago 4/28/13

The next thing I have the students do is write in one column 4-year increments from their birthday until the day before their birthday 4 years later.

Our example student:

4/28/13 - 4/27/17

4/28/13 - 4/27/21

Once you cannot add any more increments of 4 years then you go by single years

4/28/21 - 4/27/22

4/28/22 - 4/27/23

Hopefully, while you are explaining this you'll get a student or two who will tell you that they don't have to do all that, the birthday person just simply needs to multiply their age times 365 and that will show how many days they've lived.

I will go ahead and have them make the calculation but then I'll go back and have them write out a 2nd column showing how many days they actually lived in a 4 year period:

4/28/13 - 4/27/17            1461

4/28/13 - 4/27/21            1461

4/28/21 - 4/27/22              365 

4/28/22 - 4/27/23              365

I will then have them add the 2nd column up and compare it to their calculation. (1,462 to 1,460).  At some point, a student will realize the first calculation did not account for leap days.  I would then ask is this how many days our birthday friend has lived? I will then remind them that they lived today so they have lived 1.463 days.  

Movies and Math

I have spent most of this month blogging about movies for the A to Z Challenge.  

Over at Mashup Maththey posted 10 Best Math Movies For All AgesThis list included my H entry for the challenge, Hidden Figures.

Katherine Johnson - One of the Nasa computers featured in Hidden Figures
Click here for a brief biography of Katherine Johnson from Mathigon

April 11th was my 25th wedding anniversary
and it made me wonder if there were any math milestones in April.  

It turns out that April 11th, 1936 is the day Konrad Zuse  (who looks in the picture below like a combination of baseball broadcaster Harry Carey and cartoonist Charles M Schulz.) filed a patent for the automatic execution of operations while working on the first German computer, the Z-1.

On April 11th 2020 mathemetician , John Conway died of complications to Co-vid 19.  The above referenced link to April 11th,1936 contains this quote which I think is apropos to a Playful Math Carnival :

...You get surreal numbers by playing games. I used to feel guilty in Cambridge that I spent all day playing games, while I was supposed to be doing mathematics. Then, when I discovered surreal numbers, I realized that playing games IS mathematics.


 Denise Gaskins of Denise Gaskin's Let's Play Math presents Thinking Thursday: Invent A Game 3.

Her journaling prompt about variations of tic-tac-toe got me thinking of other pen-and-paper games like the dot game.  I did some research and learned about a game called Chomp. 

By Lord Belbury - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=86379139

 I'm sure that all of you out there are probably more familiar with it than I was., but just in case here is a video describing the gameplay.  

While researching this game I got to thinking of the 1999 classic book The Hershey's Milk Chocolate Bar Fraction Book.  

I don't write many math posts on my blog, but if I did I would write posts entitled "Why do all the good children's books go out of print?" If I were a bookstore owner I'd always have 3 copies of this book on my shelf.  

Teachers who don't have access to this book can borrow it virtually from Internet Archive.

I decided to make a version of Chomp for fractions. I call it Fraction Chomp, but I'm very creative with my titles. It's played exactly like described in the video except all grids should have pieces that are divided by 12 (examples 3by4, 8by3, 6by8,...) The players "chomp" a fraction of the pieces off the grid.  The fractions they can use or 1/2 1/3/ 1/4 and 1/6.  The play continues until one player can not make a fraction of the remaining pieces that is a whole number.

Imagine a 3 by 4 grid ...

  • The first player chomped 1/3 of the pieces leaving  8 left. 
  • The 2nd player might chomp 1/4 of the remaining pieces leaving 6 left. 
  • The first player would then chomp 1/3 and 4 would remain.  

At this point if the second player then chomps 1/4th of the pieces he will eventually win since their opponent will have no choice but to chomp 1/3 allowing the second player to chomp 1/2 and the first player will lose.  

However, if player 2 chomps 1/2 of the remaining 4 pieces they would lose as player 1 would also chomp 1/2 the remaining pieces for the victory.  

Kudos to Ontario Math Links who I am using 2 of their links from their article, Math Links for Week Ending April 21,st 2023. (Crazy Person Note: The week did not end on April 21st, 2023, it being a Friday and all) 

The first was from Medium blogger Sunil Singh who posted Number Hive: The Clever Gamification of Factual Fluency.  I had played Number Hive before it's like Connect-4 with multiplication.

The second link isn't a game but could still be fun in a group.  It is from the blog Emergent Math and asks the question: Is The Subway Footlong Pass Worth It?

April was National Poetry Month 
I participated in an online progressive poem..  Each day in April A poet added another line to a poem and posted it on their blog.  Here is a link to the poem as of April 28th.  

This got me to thinking about poetry and math in 2 different ways.

1. Progressive Story Problems

Have one of the students write a story problem.  Then have a second student write another story problem that starts somehow with the answer to the first problem.  A man has 6 horses 2 goats and 2 sheep. How many more horses does he have than the other animals combined? The answer is 2 Horses. The next question might start with 2 horses weigh as much as 10 sheep.  The horses weigh a combined 2000 pounds what is the average weight of the sheep? The next question could start with about 200 pounds of anything and so on and so on.  

2. Fibonacci Poem Problems

A Fibonacci Poem or Fib is a poem whose syllables follow the Fibonacci sequence
They are typically 6 lines and follow the pattern
1 syllable
2 syllables
3 syllables
5 syllables
8 syllables

Here is one I just wrote about my favorite ball team's current streak of ineptitude

Lost nine
In a row
When they play again,
Will the losses amount to ten?

Fibonacci Math Poetry

Write a fib poem
That is also a math problem or a math statement.

For example as a statement:

Don't equal
11, you'll find
They actually* equal 9

*ak-sh-u-lee (4 syllables)    

As a problem:

Plus Nineteen
Is the same as two
Times what double-digit number?



Cindy at Our Journey Westward shares An Abstract Art And Living Math Activity Inspired by Kandinsky 

Going to bring it on home and end with this link from last year from Sarah at Math = Love52 Fun End Of Year Activities For Math Class.

I've enjoyed hosting for the first time.  Next time I won't sign up for my busiest month of the year and I will start preparing much earlier than I did,  Next month's carnival will be at Nature Study Australia 

1 comment:

Denise in IL said...

Looks great! Thank you so much for hosting the carnival.

A to Z 2023 Road Trip

#AtoZChallenge 2023 RoadTrip