Thursday, 2 February 2012

Tolkien Class Maths Challenges

Today Mrs Anstead gave Tolkien Class a set of maths challenges to complete.  The children were asked to work in small groups and complete a challenge and then present their results visually.

The challenges were:

1.    In order to swallow its food a snake can open its jaws five times its normal size.  How wide would you be able to open your mouth if you could do the same?

2.    Cows produce one eighth of their weight in saliva every day.  How much saliva would you produce if you could do the same?

3.    A scarab beetle can lift 850 times its own weight.  What would you be able to lift if you could do the same?

4.    A deer’s antlers can be as wide as three fifths of its whole body length.  If you had antlers of the same scale how big would they be?

The children had lots of fun exploring the challenges.

 "I chose the snake challenge.  My mouth is 7cm wide.  If I could open it in the same way a snake can it would open to 35cm.  This would mean I could put an RE book or Mrs Anstead's head into my mouth.  I really enjoyed this investigation because it was something different." E.S

 "We chose the scarab beetle problem. I weigh 35kg. We multiplied this by 850. This means that I would be able to lift a 29750kg weight. We found out that this is the same as 18 American cars." W.RW

"In my maths lesson I investigated some problems.  My favourite was the problem with the antlers.  We measured our bodies and then divided it my five to find one fifth.  We then times this by three to find three fifths.  My antlers would be 52.3cm long." T.H

"I worked out that if I was a deer my antlers would be 87cm long.  To find this out I measured my height and then divided this by five and then multiplied it by three to find three fifths.  We used paper to find out how big our antlers would be." I.P


  1. What exciting problems you solved. Well done, I especially love the antlers and the thought of being able to lift the cars up.

  2. Fascinating, and slightly scary! It sounds like a really exciting lesson.

  3. That lesson looked like great fun.
    I calculated my mouth could open 25cm if I was a snake, that means I could eat a family choclate cake in one bite! mmmmmm.