Doggy Paddle Like a Pro

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.

Doggy Paddle Like a Pro

May 21, 2019

Do you know how to swim? It’s a very exciting moment when you finally learn how. Dogs seem to feel the same way, as in this video of 8 golden retriever puppies. Just like people, some take a while to dip in a paw, while a brave one jumps right in. Dogs love to swim, and golden retrievers are among the top 10 breeds (types) of dog that do it best. Poodles swim well, too — did you know that their name and the word “puddle” both come from the German word for “splash”? If you’d like to learn how to doggy paddle, learn from the pros!

Wee ones: Pretend you’re doing the doggy paddle. Paddle with your right “paw,” then your left paw!

Little kids: If 8 puppies go for a swim, what numbers do you say to count them? Bonus: If 8 puppies jump in, then 2 climb out, then 1 jumps back in, how many are now in the pool?

Big kids: How many swimming paws do those 8 puppies have? Bonus: If there are 20 legs in the pool including the 4 people training them, how many puppies are in?

The sky’s the limit: If there are 60 paws in the pool, and within that there are twice as many poodle paws as golden retriever paws, how many poodles are in the pool?

Wee ones: See if you know your right hand from your left.

Little kids: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Bonus: 7 puppies.

Big kids: 32 paws. Bonus: 3 puppies, since the people take up 8 legs, leaving 12 puppy legs.

The sky’s the limit: 10 poodles (and 5 golden retrievers). If there are twice as many poodle paws as golden paws, it’s like having a set of golden paws plus 2 more equal sets of poodle paws, or 3 equal sets together. So we take 1/3 of 60, which is 20, giving us 20 golden paws. That leaves us 40 poodle paws on 10 poodle, since each dog has 4 paws.

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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 before she could walk, 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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