# A Perfect 10

Today our road trip takes us to the only state with a number in its name: Tennessee! This state also has a pretty cool shape. Thanks to its wiggly eastern and western borders, it looks almost like a parallelogram. But perhaps the best math in Tennessee comes from cotton candy. A candy maker and a dentist from Nashville invented the world’s first cotton candy machine. This machine heats sugar until it melts. Then it spins the melted sugar through small holes super-fast to make a cloud of tiny threads. Just 1 or 2 teaspoons of sugar make enough cotton candy to fill a big cone. When the inventors brought their machine to the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904, people went crazy for it. The crowds bought 68,655 boxes at a quarter each! That sounds like a pretty sweet deal.

Wee ones: Tennessee begins with the number 10! Can you count up from 1 to 10?

Little kids: If you use 2 teaspoons of sugar to make pink cotton candy, 3 teaspoons to make green cotton candy, and 5 teaspoons to make blue cotton candy, how many teaspoons of sugar do you use? Bonus: Cotton candy is also called “fairy floss.” If you make 3 cones of fairy floss, then eat 1, then spin 4 more, then eat 2, how many cones do you have on hand now?

Big kids: A cotton candy machine spins 3,500 times in 1 minute! How many full minutes would it take to spin more than 10,000 times? Bonus: If chocolate starts melting at 86 degrees F but sugar doesn’t start melting until 300 degrees F, how much hotter does a pan need to be to melt sugar than chocolate?

The sky’s the limit: If those 68,655 boxes of cotton candy sold for 25 cents per box, did the inventors make more than \$20,000?