Face-Off with a Mountain

Mount Rushmore is a giant sculpture of 4 great presidents — George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln — carved into a South Dakota mountain! Their heads are 60 feet tall, so chipping out those faces was a huge job. Every day from 1927 to 1941, over 400 men and women worked as drillers, carvers swinging from ropes, and cooks for the group. 90% of the rock was actually blasted away with dynamite, then the carvers swung in to polish by hand. The sculpture was never totally finished, but we can still tell who’s who.

Wee ones: What numbers do you say to count the 4 presidents here?

Little kids: President Roosevelt is the one with the mustache. How many presidents are sitting to his right?  Bonus: Workers would sell chunks of rock to visitors. If you sold 1 rock for $2, for how much would you have to sell a second rock to make $10 total?

Big kids: The tops of the presidents’ heads are 500 feet above ground. Since their heads are 60 feet tall, how high off the ground are their chins?  Bonus: If you sell rocks for either $2 or $7 apiece, how many combinations of the two could you sell to make $23?

Wee ones: 1, 2, 3, 4.

Little kids: 2 presidents (Washington and Jefferson).  Bonus: For $8.

Big kids: 440 feet.  Bonus: Only 2 possibilities: one $7 rock and eight $2 rocks, or three $7 rocks and one $2.  You can’t sell 0 or 2 big rocks, because then the leftover is an odd number — you can’t fill that by selling $2 rocks.

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