The People Flying over Your Head

by Laura Overdeck

Have you ever watched an airplane in the sky and wondered how many people are in there, and where they’re going? This webpage made a 2-minute video showing all the planes that flew over the Atlantic Ocean on a single day – over 2,500 flights in just 24 hours! With about 100 people or more on many planes, that’s a lot of people airborne at once.

Wee ones: If you’re the 9th person to get on the plane, what number passenger boards after you?

Little kids: If plane #1 lands and they’re all spaced to land every 10 minutes, how long until the 3rd plane lands?  Bonus: If 400 flights fly during each busy hour in the morning, how many planes fly in a 2-hour stretch?

Big kids: If 7,000 people fly in the morning and twice as many fly during the afternoon, how many fly that stretch in total?  Bonus: If there were exactly 2,500 flights and they each filled up with 100 passengers, how many people flew over the ocean that whole day?

Answers:
Wee ones: The 10th passenger.

Little kids: 20 minutes, since the 2nd plane will come in 10 minutes.  Bonus: 800 flights.

Big kids: 21,000 people.  Bonus: 250,000 people – a quarter of a million!

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