Rescuing the Big Cats

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.

Rescuing the Big Cats

October 4, 2015

If you have a cute little cat as a pet, you don’t have to stop there — why not go bigger? These fellows in Mexico rescue big cats, like tigers, lions, jaguars, and cheetahs. Eduardo and his team save these beautiful animals from cruel owners who keep the animals in circuses or badly run zoos. Instead, these big furry friends can now live in peace at the Black Jaguar White Tiger Foundation rescue center. These are big, strong, dangerous cats: lions can weigh more than 500 pounds, and cheetahs can run at nearly 70 miles an hour. You wouldn’t want an angry big cat pouncing on you. But they’re all super-cuddly with Eduardo and each other. They even let the family dog snuggle up and chew on their paws. The center has more than 30 cats living there now, and if there are other big cats in need, hopefully Eduardo will find them.

Wee ones: Who has more legs, you or a lion? (All cats have 4 legs.)

Little kids: Who’s faster, a 60-mile-an-hour lion or a 70-mile-an-hour cheetah?  Bonus: Their Babies webpage show 15 pictures of big cats, including 5 that show 2 siblings each (brothers and/or sisters). How many cats are pictured in total?

Big kids: If they have 31 cats and then rescue 19 more, how many cats will they have?  Bonus: How many furry paws do 30 big cats have?

The sky’s the limit: If of the 30 cats there were twice as many lions as cheetahs, twice as many jaguars as lions, and 2 tigers, how many of each cat would they have?




Wee ones: The lion.

Little kids: The 70-mile-an-hour cheetah.  Bonus: 20 cats, since those pairs add 5 extra.

Big kids: 50 cats.  Bonus: 120 paws.

The sky’s the limit: There are 16 jaguars, 8 lions, 4 cheetahs, and the 2 tigers. Once we carve off the tigers we have 28 cats. And each set of 1 cheetah, 2 lions and 4 jaguars makes a set of 7. We can fit 4 of those sets of 7 in the 28, so we have 4×1, 4×2, and 4×4 of those animals.

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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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