Playing with mathematical riddles can be an intriguing and fun-filled pastime — as popular science writer Martin Gardner proves in this entertaining collection. Puzzlists need only an elementary knowledge of math and a will to resist looking up the answer before trying to solve a problem. Written in a light and witty style, Entertaining Mathematical Puzzles is a mixture of old and new riddles, grouped into sections that cover a variety of mathematical topics: money, speed, plane and solid geometry, probability, topology, tricky puzzles, and more. The probability section, for example, points out that everything we do, everything that happens around us, obeys the laws of probability; geometry puzzles test our ability to think pictorially and often, in more than one dimension; while topology, among the "youngest and rowdiest branches of modern geometry," offers a glimpse into a strange dimension where properties remain unchanged, no matter how a figure is twisted, stretched, or compressed. Clear and concise comments at the beginning of each section explain the nature and importance of the math needed to solve each puzzle. A carefully explained solution follows each problem. In many cases, all that is needed to solve a puzzle is the ability to think logically and clearly, to be "on the alert for surprising, off-beat angles...that strange hidden factor that everyone else had overlooked." Fully illustrated, this engaging collection will appeal to parents and children, amateur mathematicians, scientists, and students alike, and may, as the author writes, make the reader "want to study the subject in earnest" and explains "some of the inviting paths that wind away from the problems into lusher areas of the mathematical jungle." 65 black-and-white illustrations.
From the author of Dover's Mental Gymnastics come these amusing and challenging new puzzles. Abounding in mathematical paradoxes and logic puzzles, the collection also features a variety of sports-related riddles and paradigms. These brainteasers vary in complexity from playful propositions to tough mathematical conundrums. Suitable for ages 12 and up. Solutions.
This classic work offers scores of stimulating, mind-expanding games and puzzles: arithmetical and geometrical problems, chessboard recreations, magic squares, map-coloring problems, cryptography and cryptanalysis, much more. "A must to add to your mathematics library" ? The Mathematics Teacher. Index. References for Further Study. Includes 150 black-and-white line illustrations.
Compiled by a prominent educator and author, this volume presents an intriguing mix of mathematical paradoxes — phenomena with surprising outcomes that can be resolved mathematically. Students and puzzle enthusiasts will get plenty of enjoyment mixed with a bit of painless mathematical instruction from 30 conundrums, including The Birthday Paradox, Aristotle's Magic Wheel, and A Greek Tragedy.
Clear instructions for 101 tricks and problems, many based on important math principles. Master such number phenomena as Lightning Calculations, Giant Memory, Magic Squares, nearly 100 more. 98 illustrations.
Early middle school is a great time for children to start their mathematical circle education. This time is a period of curiosity and openness to learning. The thinking habits and study skills acquired by children at this age stay with them for a lifetime. Mathematical circles, with their question-driven approach and emphasis on creative problem-solving, have been rapidly gaining popularity in the United States. The circles expose children to the type of mathematics that stimulates development of logical thinking, creativity, analytical abilities and mathematical reasoning. These skills, while scarcely touched upon at school, are in high demand in the modern world. This book contains everything that is needed to run a successful mathematical circle for a full year. The materials, distributed among 29 weekly lessons, include detailed lectures and discussions, sets of problems with solutions, and contests and games. In addition, the book shares some of the know-how of running a mathematical circle. The curriculum, which is based on the rich and long-standing Russian math circle tradition, has been modified and adapted for teaching in the United States. For the past decade, the author has been actively involved in teaching a number of mathematical circles in the Seattle area. This book is based on her experience and on the compilation of materials from these circles. The material is intended for students in grades 5 to 7. It can be used by teachers and parents with various levels of expertise who are interested in teaching mathematics with the emphasis on critical thinking. Also, this book will be of interest to mathematically motivated children. In the interest of fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and everyday life, MSRI and the AMS are publishing books in the Mathematical Circles Library series as a service to young people, their parents and teachers, and the mathematics profession.