mpsMOOC13 Observer July 8: Problems 4-6, Minecraft, the Cat, paper dolls

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This is the news from the open online course Problem Solving for the Young, the Very Young, and the Young at Heart.


By July 14:

Share stories about problems 1-3:

Plan problems 4-6 and share the plans:

Earlier tasks:

Plan problems 1-3 and share the plans. We updated the PDF file to have better links to the young adult level of problems.

Sign-up tasks will close down July 10.

  1. Log in to the question and answer hub Ask Moby Snoodles.
  2. Leave a comment with your answers to the four questions.
  3. Schedule a short video or voice conference. – There are time slots for July 7-11

A variety of problem adaptations

I’m thinking about how I bring these ideas to my son who recently turned 4 and involve my daughter at the same time. I am thinking of using pennies (or another counter, but pennies are always available) and presenting even numbers as “friendly” numbers because of the way they pair up and odd numbers as “lonely” numbers because of the one left out. – Angela V. (faroop)

Or maybe using paper dolls – my oldest is very keen on those, she could make some for me! And I’d like to prepare sheets to fill in any patterns we see, just a basic table with number of pins/dolls, number of meeting points etc. – Miranda J. (mirandamiranda)

Problem 2 – my son that likes Minecraft said that in creative mode, you can place a piston that has a brown end and a gray end and then place a certain number of pistons until you have the number you want, you can try it again in another area with the same number of pistons but using different orders. You could use a half block to mark each green to green match. – Michelle G. (mgrunk)

Minecraft Menger

Minecraft Menger Fractal from the Fractal Explorer


You can respond to individual people to offer help, or to ask questions. The button is at the bottom right of every answer:



Share your favorite resources with everybody at the books and links thread. Write a phrase or so on why you like the resource.

Out of the Labyrinth, by Robert and Ellen Kaplan, and ANYTHING by James Tanton. – Rodi Steinig

The Cat in Numberland; The Adventures of Penrose the Mathematical Cat. – Hong L. (hliu123)

P.S. We are working with Ivar Ekeland, the author of The Cat in Numberland, to produce a sequel. We are collecting the sequel ideas on the same forum we use for this course: Ivar also made the first book available at Moebius Noodles, at the cover price.

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