A Ride with Mama Turtle

A Ride with Mama Turtle

May 12, 2019

Mama turtle rideIt’s Mother’s Day, the day we celebrate everything our moms do for us. But why not celebrate all moms, not just humans? Animal moms work just as hard to care for their kids. Look at this huge African tortoise mama carrying her babies. The African tortoise is the largest tortoise in Africa, with the grown-ups weighing nearly 180 pounds. Her 4-day-old babies, though, are only 2-3 inches long, and weigh only about 1 ounce (1/16th of pound). They’ll have to grow a lot before they can carry their own kids!

Wee ones: The African tortoise is the 3rd largest type of tortoise in the world. How many kinds of tortoises are bigger?

Little kids: If the 3rd tortoise slides off the shell, then the 4th tortoise, then the 5th…who’s next?  Bonus: If the next 2 babies stay on, who slides off after them?

Big kids: If the mom and her 1-pound baby weigh 160 pounds together, how much does the mama weigh?  Bonus: Once each baby weighs 1 1/2 pounds, how much do 2 of them weigh together?

The sky’s the limit: If 8 baby tortoises sit in a circle, and the mama kisses every 3rd one — the 1st, then the 4th, then the 7th, then looping back around to the 2nd, and so on…how many times does she have to go around to kiss all 8?





Wee ones: 2 types of tortoises.

Little kids: The 6th tortoise.  Bonus: The 9th tortoise.

Big kids: 159 pounds.  Bonus: 3 pounds.

The sky’s the limit: 3 times around, since she’s kissing about 1/3 of them each time. She’ll kiss the 1st, 4th and 7th baby, then the 2nd, 5th and 8th, then the 3rd and 6th.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

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.

More posts from this author