The post Lady with a Big Foot appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>The Statue of Liberty is famous around the world. Everyone knows the tall, beautiful green statue standing in New York Harbor. She’s easy to see from the highway, the train or the plane, because she’s huge. She stands 151 feet tall from base to torch, and it takes 354 stairs to climb to the top. Even just the Statue’s feet are 25 feet long. That means she would wear a size 879 sandal! If you’re 4 feet tall, you’re about the length of her big toe; if you’re only 3 feet tall, you’re her pinky toe. There’s no way the two of you are sharing shoes!

*Wee ones:* Look at your hand, and hold it up against your foot. Which one is longer?

*Little kids:* If the Statue’s foot is 25 feet long, and your car is 15 feet long, which one is longer? *Bonus:* If you needed 2 buckets of paint to paint each of her toenails, how many buckets would you need to paint all 10?

*Big kids:* If you wear a size 4 shoe, how many shoe sizes bigger is the Statue’s size-879 foot? *Bonus:* If you run up her 354 steps 2 at a time (every other step), how many steps do your shoes touch?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Your foot should be longer.

*Little kids:* The Statue’s foot is longer. *Bonus:* 20 buckets of paint.

*Big kids:* 875 sizes. *Bonus:* 177 steps.

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]]>The post Earth You Can Eat appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>The Earth feels flat, but we’re really standing on a giant ball of land and ocean. What’s more, the inside of Earth isn’t all rock and dirt. If you dig down a few miles, you reach the “mantle,” which is crumbly and can move. 1,800 miles below that, you reach the outer core, which is super-hot liquid. Finally 1,400 miles below *that* is a solid ball, the inner core. It is white-hot, almost 11,000 degrees! So baker Rhiannon at cakecrumbs.me baked an amazing cake to show these layers. She made vanilla buttercake for the white core, yellow lemon cake for the outer core around it, and red Madeira sponge cake for the mantle layers. Throw on some blue and green marshmallow fondant (stiff icing) for the outside, and we have an Earth you can eat!

*Wee ones:* Earth is a giant round ball. Can you see any round ball shapes in your room?

*Little kids:* How many colors can you count in the cake — both the inside and outside? *Bonus:* If she cut the cake into 10 slices and you ate 2 of them, how many pieces would be left?

*Big kids:* This half-Earth cake looks like it could serve 12 slices. How many same-size slices would a whole Earth cake serve? *Bonus:* If the baker needed 2 cups of white batter, twice as much yellow batter as white, and 3 times as much red as *yellow*, how many cups did she need in total?

*The sky’s the limit:* This cake is about 1 foot wide. Earth is about 8,000 *miles* wide. If there are about 5,000 feet in a mile, about how many times as wide is our real Earth compared to this cake?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Answers might include soccer balls, beach balls and other toys, or the round part of a light bulb.

*Little kids:* We see 5 major colors: white, yellow, red, blue and green. *Bonus:* 8 slices.

*Big kids:* 24 slices. *Bonus:* 18 cups of batter, since you need 4 cups of yellow and 12 cups of red.

*The sky’s the limit:* 40,000,000 (40 million) times as wide!

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]]>The post Mouse + Kangaroo = ?… appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>Wouldn’t you love to have this animal as a pet? And what kind of animal is it, anyway? It’s a jerboa, a tiny hopping mouse that lives in the desert. It really can hop like a kangaroo: even though it’s only 3 inches long, it can hop at 15 miles an hour! That’s 5 times as fast as we giant humans walk. Its ears are longer than its whole head, and its tail can be longer than its whole body. The math gets even crazier when it comes to housing: the jerboa lives in 4 different burrows. It has 1 burrow for hiding during the day while out hunting; 1 for hiding at night while hunting; 1 “full-time” burrow for summer; and finally 1 full-time winter home. We hope the jerboa can remember directions as well as it can hop.

*Wee ones:* If you had 1 little house for the spring, 1 house for summer, 1 house for fall and 1 more for winter, how many houses would you have in total?

*Little kids:* How many ears do you and that jerboa have together? *Bonus:* The jerboa has 4 legs, including 2 tiny front ones. If there are 10 legs in the room, how many jerboas could there be, and how many people if there’s at least 1 of each?

*Big kids:* How many times as tall as a 3-inch jerboa is a 60-inch-tall human? *Bonus:* If a 3-inch jerboa can hop 15 miles an hour, how fast could that 60-inch human hop if people were just as fast compared to their height?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* 4 houses.

*Little kids:* 4 ears. *Bonus:* There could be 1 jerboa and 3 people, or 2 jerboas and just 1 person.

*Big kids:* 20 times as tall. *Bonus:* 300 miles an hour!

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]]>The post How to Watch for Astronauts appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>We have lots of big machines, from fridges to washing machines to cars. But we also have a whole *other* set of machines flying over our heads. Not just airplanes, but smaller machines called satellites. They fly around Earth even higher than airplanes, and bounce phone calls and videos back down to our phones and computers. The International Space Station (ISS) is a really big satellite – astronauts live inside it for months. The best part is, you can see these spaceships from down here on the ground! Just click on this link, click on your state, then pick a town near yours. It tells you when to go outside to see the ISS and other satellites fly over you. Just don’t run out there in your underwear – these machines can take pictures.

*Wee ones:* Look out the window. Do you see anything in the sky? The Sun, Moon, or stars? Or an airplane, or a bird? Count however many you can!

*Little kids:* If at sunset you count 4 airplanes plus 2 satellites, how many flying objects do you spot? *Bonus:* If you wave to 5 astronauts, and of those the 1^{st}, 3^{rd} and 5^{th} wave back to you, which astronauts don’t wave back?

*Big kids:* If the Space Station shows up over your house at 7:52 pm, and disappears again at 8:01, how many minutes were you able to see it? *Bonus:* If the ISS shows up every 1 1/2 hours starting at 7:52 pm, how many more times after that will you see it before midnight?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Different for everyone…see how many sky objects you can count!

*Little kids:* 6 flying objects. *Bonus:* The 2^{nd} and 4^{th}.

*Big kids:* 9 minutes. *Bonus:* 2 more times: at 9:22 pm and 10:52 pm.

Some helpful hints: The website tells you the compass direction in which to look (e.g. north, southeast, etc.) and elevation, i.e. how many degrees up off the horizon. For compass direction, you’ll need to know which way is north, or use a compass (a lot of smartphones have them). For elevation, zero is on the horizon, 90 degrees is directly overhead. So 45 degrees is halfway up. By the way, the reason satellites don’t show up for long is because they eventually move into the Earth’s shadow; we see them only for the part of their trip when they’re lit by the sun *and* the background sky is getting dark. OK, have fun!

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]]>The post How Heavy Is a Fluffy Dog? appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>It feels great to get a haircut. You feel so light and cool, because your hair weighs less. Well, as our fan Ally M. shared with us, this poor dog just got the haircut of his life. Lazarus, a Great Pyrenees (type of dog), had been left living alone in a barn, because his owner was too old to take care of him. The dog’s fur grew longer and longer, and knotty and dirty. Finally he was rescued, and the people who saved him sent him right to the groomer. As you can see, Lazarus had a LOT of fur, so much that he weighed 35 pounds less after they shaved him! We can’t say we love this haircut – he’s now lollipop-shaped – but we hope they’ll let his fur grow back a *little* bit.

*Wee ones:* Lazarus and other Great Pyrenees dogs are white. See if you can spot 3 white things in the room.

*Little kids:* If your hair is 8 inches long and you cut off 1 inch, how long is it now? *Bonus:* How much do you weigh? If you lost 35 pounds of hair, would you weigh anything at all?

*Big kids:* Lazarus got his haircut in September. If he gets his next haircut 7 months later, what month will that be? *Bonus:* If Lazarus could grow back that hair in 7 months, how many pounds of hair would he have to grow each month (if it grows evenly)?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Answers might include pages in a book, sheets and pillowcases, and socks.

*Little kids:* 7 inches. *Bonus:* Different for everyone…find out if you weigh more or less than 35 pounds!

*Big kids:* In April. *Bonus:* 5 pounds a month.

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]]>The post The Car That Can Cook Breakfast appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>Driving a racecar must be* **really* fun. So our fan Elian K. asked for our coolest numbers about Formula 1 racecars. Each car is made of more than 16,000 parts — but one favorite part, the steering wheel, can sometimes pop out. This lets the driver climb in and out faster. Even with all those parts, the cars weigh only 1,500 pounds. They’re so light that they need wings to hold them *down*, otherwise they’d take off into the air. They say if you drove that racecar upside-down on the roof of a tunnel at 150 miles an hour, the car wouldn’t fall! Finally, the tires get so hot during a race — 250 degrees F — that you could cook an egg on them afterwards. And after all that racing, you might be hungry.

*Wee ones:* Car tires are circles. Can you see any circles in your room?

*Little kids:* A racecar has 2 front tires and 2 back tires. How many tires does it have in total? *Bonus:* If you can cook 2 eggs on each of those tires, can you cook half a dozen (6 eggs) at once?

*Big kids:* These racecars can drive 220 miles per hour! If you’re speeding at 120, how much faster do you need to drive? *Bonus:* If you drive 3 times as fast as your usual 65 miles an hour, can you keep up with a 220-mph Formula 1 car?

*The sky’s the limit:* If after the race, every racecar driver cooks 3 eggs on each front tire and 1 egg on each back tire, and there are 32 more “front” eggs than “back” eggs, how many cars drove in the race?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Answers may include clocks, buttons on clothes, the rim of a cup, or eyelets for shoelaces.

*Little kids:* 4 tires. *Bonus:* Yes! You can cook up to 8 eggs at once.

*Big kids:* 100 miles an hour faster. *Bonus:* Not quite…you’ll reach 195 miles an hour.

*The sky’s the limit:* 8 cars, since each car has 4 more front eggs (6 total) than back eggs (2 total).

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]]>The post The Song That’s Stuck in Your Head appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>Have you ever had a song stuck in your head? Maybe a song from an ad, or a theme song from a cartoon show? It can be pretty annoying, even if you like the song. You just can’t stop it from playing in your head! This is called an “earworm,” and scientists are trying to find out why this happens to us. They say it shows that there are parts of our brains we really can’t control. They studied lots of people and found that everyone gets different songs stuck in their heads – but all the songs are simple, and play the same notes over and over. Sometimes your brain plays one line over and over – and sometimes the song plays faster than in real life. How much faster? Let’s see if we can count out the beat.

*Wee ones:* Sing a line of your favorite song. How many words did you sing? Count them out with a grown-up!

*Little kids:* Sing a line from another song. Did you sing the same note again at any point? How many times? *Bonus:* If a song sings “I love you” 3 times in a row, how many words is that in total?

*Big kids:* If a song plays in your head every half-hour starting at 3:00 pm, what number round do you start hearing at 7:00 pm? *Bonus:* If your favorite song is 3 minutes long, but when stuck in your head it takes only 2 minutes 34 seconds, how much faster does the song play in your head?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Different for everyone…count out the words!

*Little kids:* Again, different for everyone…see if you can hear the same high or low note more than once. *Bonus:* 9 words.

*Big kids:* The 9^{th} round. *Bonus:* 26 seconds faster.

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]]>The post X-Ray Vision Carrots appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>In a world full of salty, fatty snacks, you might not always feel like eating your veggies. But maybe it just depends what we call them. Some scientists gave carrots to 2 groups of kids — but told one group that they were getting “X-Ray Vision Carrots.” They told the other group they were eating plain old carrots. Well, the kids who thought they had gotten special x-ray vision carrots ate almost twice as many! The good news is, all carrots do help you see better in the dark, no matter what we call them. Carrots have beta-carotene, which helps your body make vitamin A, and vitamin A helps your eyes. But we can’t promise that our Pokemon Power Peas will help you play the game.

*Wee ones:* If you gobble up 6 Pokemon Peas, what numbers do you say to count them?

*Little kids:* If you eat the 1^{st} row of kernels on an ear of Crazy-Cool Corn, then the 3^{rd} row, then the 5^{th} row…what row do you eat next? *Bonus:* Once you eat the 9^{th} row, how many rows of cool kernels have you eaten?

*Big kids:* If you can slice an X-ray Vision Carrot into 8 little circles, how many slices can you get from 3 carrots? *Bonus:* If you and your friend *each* need 15 slices to get X-ray vision, will 4 carrots be enough?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.

*Little kids:* The 7^{th} row. *Bonus:* 5 rows.

*Big kids:* 24 slices. *Bonus:* Yes, because they’ll give you 32 slices, which is more than the 30 you need.

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]]>The post Breaking a World Record – With All Your Friends appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>It must be exciting to hold a world record – for running the fastest, or swimming the farthest, or changing clothes while jumping on a trampoline (yes, that’s one of them). So it makes sense that there’s a whole city that tries to break a world record every year! In the Spanish city of Valladolid, the townspeople get together to break the “most people doing something”-type records. One year they all threw hats. Another year they all bounced beach balls. What’s strange is that more than 12,000 people showed up to lick lollipops, but almost three times as many came to wave flags. You’d think free candy would draw a bigger crowd! But as the Valladolidians have shown, any record-breaking activity can be a blast.

*Wee ones:* Jump up off the ground. Now try to jump higher. Have a grown-up hold out a hand to mark how high you got, and see if you can break your own record!

*Little kids:* If you and 8 friends throw hats, how many of you are trying to break the record? *Bonus:* The Valladolidians threw hats 3 years ago. Were you alive then, and if so, how old were you?

*Big kids:* If you lick a lollipop, then wave a flag, then bounce a beach ball, then lick a lollipop to start the pattern again…what’s the 18th thing you do? Try to figure it out without counting one by one! *Bonus:* 9,995 people threw hats for that record. If 5 more people had joined them, how many people would they have had?

*The sky’s the limit:* Valladolid has about 300,000 people. Which would be a bigger crowd: 1/2 of them breaking a record, or 1/3 of them breaking a record and another 1/5 of them watching?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* See how high you can jump!

*Little kids:* 9 people. *Bonus:* Different for everyone…if you are 3 or older, subtract 3 from your age.

*Big kids:* Bounce a beach ball, since that’s what you do every multiple of 3. *Bonus:* 10,000 people.

*The sky’s the limit:* The 1/3 and 1/5 together are bigger. 1/2 the people would be just 150,000, while 1/3 would be 100,000 and 1/5 would be 60,000, making 160,000. This is always true for those fractions: 1/2 is the same as 15/30, while 1/3 is 10/30 and 1/5 is 6/30. So 1/3 + 1/5 is 1/30^{th} more than 1/2.

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]]>The post The Slimy Truth about Squid appeared first on Bedtime Math.

]]>Okay, let’s just say it: the squid is not the cutest animal out there. It’s slimy instead of fuzzy, and you can hardly tell where its face is. But the squid shows us that you don’t have to be good-looking to be smart. It’s one of the smartest animals in the ocean. Sea divers say that when you stare into a squid’s eyes, it will stare right back at you, which must feel really weird. And scientists have found that the cells in a squid’s brain work a lot like our brains. It’s a busy brain, after all, since the squid has to track all those legs. Just to set the numbers straight, a squid has 8 “arms” and 2 much longer “tentacles” – which makes for some crazy math.

*Wee ones:* How many arms do the people in your room have? Do they have as many as a squid?

*Little kids:* If you’ve counted 4 of a squid’s 8 arms, what are the next 3 numbers you say? *Bonus: *An octopus really has only 6 arms! (The other two are tentacles.) How many arms do an octopus and squid have together?

*Big kids:* Squid squirt out ink to fight off enemies. If you could make 10 magic markers from each squirt of ink, can you make 52 markers from 6 squirts? *Bonus:* If a bunch of squid at the aquarium have 48 arms in total, how many squid live there?

__Answers:__

*Wee ones:* Different for everyone…count yours, a grown-up’s, maybe the arms on a doll!

*Little kids:* 5, 6, 7. *Bonus:* 14 arms, since it’s 6 + 8.

*Big kids:* Yes, because the 6 squirts can make 60 markers. *Bonus:* 6 squid (again, each has only 8 “arms”).

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