Crayon Parade

We just love this map of Crayola crayon colors over the years. In 1903, there were just 8 crayon colors, but by 1935 it had doubled to 16 colors. The chart creator, Stephen von Worley, uses years with an exact multiple of the original 8 colors, so the stripes line up nicely. 1949 has 48 colors, 6 times as many 8, while 2010 shows about 15 times 8, or 120 colors. It all helps us draw much better pictures today!

Wee ones: The “primary colors,” which we mix to make all other colors, are red, yellow and blue. How many colors is that?

Little kids: If your crayon box has 3 crayons in the front row and 1 more than that in the second row, how many crayons do you have?  Bonus: If you mix any 2 primary colors in equal amounts, you get a secondary color. Since there are 3 primary colors, how many ways can you mix 2 of them?

Big kids: By 1972 there were 9 times as many shades as the first 8. How many colors were there that year?  Bonus: If the vat of wax for red-orange uses twice as much red wax as yellow, and it uses 36 cups in total, how many cups of each color are in there?

Wee ones: 3 colors.

Little kids: 7 crayons, since it’s 3+4.  Bonus: 3 ways: blue + yellow (to make green), red + yellow (to make orange), and blue + red (to make purple).

Big kids: 72 colors.  Bonus: 24 cups red and 12 cups yellow. There are 2 parts red and 1 part yellow, making red 2 parts out of 3, and 1/3 of 36 is 12.

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