Where Kids Outscore the Grown-ups

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.

Where Kids Outscore the Grown-ups

June 7, 2014

Have you ever wondered how far you walk every day? And how many steps you take to go that far? You’re a busy kid — you probably walk a lot farther than you think. Best of all, you can find out exactly how many steps you take by wearing a pedometer. It’s a little gadget that you clip onto your pocket, and every time it feels the bounce of your step, it adds 1 to the total. We grown-ups tried it and took 7,000 or 8,000 steps in one day, which was exciting, until one of the kids wore it and racked up over 15,000 steps! That makes sense: kids have to take more steps to get anywhere because kids’ legs are shorter. Also, kids are busier: you all have to chase each other, climb on furniture, and run to the bathroom multiple times during dinner, which all adds up. Try counting how many steps you take every day, and you might be pretty surprised.

Wee ones: If you take 5 steps, what numbers do you say to count them?

Little kids: If you run up the 20 steps at school and run back down to get bigger numbers, how many steps do you get?  Bonus: If your steps are half as long as your uncle’s, when he takes 6 steps how many do you have to take to keep up with him?

Big kids: If in the morning you take 1,100 steps before ever leaving the house, and you take 4 times as many as that the rest of the day, what’s your total for the day?  Bonus: If you discover that when you drum on the table, the pedometer counts all those “bounces” as steps, how many steps do you accidentally get for drumming 2 beats per second through a 3-minute song?

 

 

 

Answers:
Wee ones: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

Little kids: 40 steps.  Bonus: 12 steps.

Big kids: 5,500 steps – that’s 1,100 to start, plus 4,400 more.  Bonus: 360 steps, since a 3-minute song has 180 seconds, and you get 2 bounces per second.

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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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