One Friend or the Otter

by Laura Overdeck

Orangutans are a lot like people, and like people they can get bored quickly. So this zoo in Belgium makes sure their orangutan has animal friends – a big bunch of otters! Orangutans can grow to up to 5 feet long and weigh 200 pounds. Meanwhile, otters are only around 2 feet long – and weigh only 6-7 pounds. But that just makes them better at playing hide-and-seek. We just hope the orangutan doesn’t sit on them by accident.

Wee ones: Do you think you weigh more than a 6-pound otter? Step on a scale and compare that number!

Little kids: If you’re playing hide-and-seek with 7 otters and you’ve found 5, how many do you still need to find? Bonus: The zoo has 3 orangutans, who are 3 years old, 15 years old, and 24 years old. How much older is the middle one than the youngest? Count down from 15 or up from 3 if it helps!

Big kids: About how many 7-pound otters would it take to equal your own weight? Bonus: How many 7-pound otters would it take to outweigh a 200-pound orangutan?

Answers:
Wee ones: We bet you do weigh more than 6 pounds!

Little kids: 2 otters, because 7 – 5 = 2. Bonus: 12 years older, because 15 – 3 = 12.

Big kids: Different for everyone… find out your weight, then divide that number by 7. Round to the nearest otter! Bonus: 29 7-pound otters would weigh 203 pounds. Every 10 otters = 70 pounds. 3 sets of 10 would make 210 pounds, just as 3 x 7 = 21. But then you can subtract 1 7-pound otter from those 30 otters and still have more than 200 pounds of otter.

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