Math CentralQuandaries & Queries


Question from Melissa, a parent:

suppose you have 60 straws. How many of each shape could you make
a) Triangles
b) squares
c) pentagons
d) hexagons

Hi Melissa.

If a straw can only be used for one shape at a time, you can just think of it this way:

(b) There are four sides to a square. So I need four straws for each square. I have 60 straws. So I have to divide them into groups of 4. 60 divided by 4 is 15. So I can make 15 squares.

Try the others now.

Hope this helps,
Stephen La Rocque.

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