Movie Time for Bugs

Here's your nightly math! Just 5 quick minutes of number fun for kids and parents at home. Read a cool fun fact, followed by math riddles at different levels so everyone can jump in. Your kids will love you for it.

Movie Time for Bugs

January 11, 2020

Have you ever watched a movie in 3D? You wear funny glasses that make everything look closer or farther away. Every shape in the movie is drawn in both blue and red, with each blue shape shifted to the left. The red lens lets one eye see only the blue shapes, and the blue lens lets your other eye see only red. The bigger the gap between them, the bigger and closer that object looks. It’s copying how your two eyes see differently from each other because they’re spaced apart (hold your finger near your face, then close one eye to see it “jump”!) Scientists have wondered whether insects see in 3D, too. So they put teeny tiny 3D movie glasses on a praying mantis, and found out that yes, mantises can tell whether objects are close or far away. Of course, now those bugs want to watch movies!

Wee ones: A praying mantis has 2 eyes. Do you have more or fewer eyes than that?

Little kids: If you and your pet mantis go to the movies, how many legs do you have altogether? (As an insect, a mantis has 6 legs).  Bonus: If 7 bugs go to the movie and you have 10 pairs of glasses for them, how many extra pairs do you have for people?

Big kids: If there are 18 moviegoers, and there are twice as many bugs as people in the crowd, how many are there of each?  Bonus: If there are 29 moviegoers and every 4th one is a bug (while the rest are people), what’s the greatest number of bugs you can have?