Math CentralQuandaries & Queries


Question from Jana, a student:

hello, I love this site, it explains everything so well. I have been asked a question in science, it asks for me to make a devise which separated three different sized marbles. I have thought this through alot but it still never makes sense to me. Everything i seem to think of never works out or has something that will make it not work. I'm really stuck on this one...please help me..! Thankyou so much Jana

Hi Jana.

There is a toy that I had when I was little where you place a steel ball at the end (away from you) on top of two metal rods and you moved the rods apart to make the ball come towards you, but you had to keep the ball from falling between the rods until it came close to your hands.

I don't know what it was called but it was the same as this picture here (from an online store here) where it is called Shoot the Moon.

shoot the moon

I think if you are familiar with this toy or just think about how it works for a moment, you will come up with a very good strategy for your problem.

Stephen La Rocque.

About Math Central


Math Central is supported by the University of Regina and The Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences.
Quandaries & Queries page Home page University of Regina PIMS