Lego Christmas Tree

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.

Lego Christmas Tree

December 25, 2014

Today is Christmas Day, when Christians everywhere celebrate the birth of Jesus 2014 years ago. A big part of that is decorating the Christmas tree. People started using live fir trees as Christmas trees hundreds of years ago in Germany, as a sign of everlasting life with God, and in 1846 Queen Victoria of England made them popular in the UK and US. Today you can put up a real tree or a factory-made one, but here’s a third idea: a Lego tree. This year the Lego Store in Sydney, Australia built a 32-foot-tall tree of Lego and Duplo bricks. Tree branches are spiky and ball ornaments are round, but the builders did an awesome job making these shapes out of rectangular bricks. They also built Lego candy canes, presents, and even a Santa holding a surfboard. The tree, which weighs 3 1/2 tons and used over half a million Lego bricks, took 5 people a whole 1,200 hours to build. It’s hard work to bring a live tree into your house, but probably easier than carrying this Lego one!

Wee ones: A 10-year-old won to have his Lego reindeer added to the display. How many Lego legs should that reindeer have?

Little kids: If you got to be 1 of the 5 people building this huge tree, how many people would be working with you?  Bonus: If a 400-piece candy cane is exactly half red and half white, how many bricks of each color does it use?

Big kids: If every ball ornament uses 40 bricks, how many bricks do you need to build 3 of them?  Bonus: What does the number “half a million” look like in numbers?

 

 

 

Answers:
Wee ones: 4 Lego legs.

Little kids: 4 other people.  Bonus: 200 bricks of each color.

Big kids: 120 bricks.  Bonus: 500,000.

And thank you both Mary Claire A. and Catherine M. for telling us about this amazing tree!

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About the Author

Laura Overdeck

Laura Overdeck

Laura Bilodeau Overdeck is founder and president of Bedtime Math Foundation. Her goal is to make math as playful for kids as it was for her when she was a child. Her mom had Laura baking while still in diapers, and her dad had her using power tools at a very unsafe age, measuring lengths, widths and angles in the process. Armed with this early love of numbers, Laura went on to get a BA in astrophysics from Princeton University, and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business; she continues to star-gaze today. Laura’s other interests include her three lively children, chocolate, extreme vehicles, and Lego Mindstorms.

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