Friday, November 9, 2012

Your Personal Math Sentence

This is a great activity for the whole family.
My daughter brought it from school and challenged us all to make our own math sentences. She was very excited about it, I guess because it made math personal and playful.
Write your date of birth. 
Use digits in your date and math signs to come up with a math sentence. For kids it is easier because they have lots of 0s in their dates.

For example my daughter's dob is 4.5.2003
Math sentence she came up with:  5x4 + 3x0 =20

My dob is 5.28.1971 and I am thinking about my sentence.
Submit your personalized math sentence any time until midnight Eastern Time on Sunday, on our Family Puzzle Marathon.

Top image by millersjon, distributed under CCL.


Annie said...

My birthday is 4/28/51 so...

(4x5) - 2 = 18

Thad said...

This is trivial for anyone born in 2000 - 2010. One way to come up with a true math equation is to use multiplication only and put a zero on each side. It doesn't even matter if the month and/or day of your DOB is one digit or two. For example, if you were born on m/dd/2005, one possible math equation is 2 x m x 0 = 5 x d x d x 0.

I don't want to post my DOB here, but I did manage to come up with a true math equation that fits this puzzle.

Thad said...

I came up with on equation for our Math Mom, 5 + 2 + 8 * 1 = 9 + 7 - 1.

Ilya said...

I will use my wedding date - 6/15/1997.


Jerome said...

Funny you should bring this up. Canada has no set pattern for dates. Here are some examples.

Our Television provider goes day, month year when they talk about when we paid them.
The date the Invoice was printed however goes Month, day year.

The bakery’s (across the street from us) debit machine goes year month, day, but their till goes year day month

Canada Post goes year day month (I think).

Surprise our telephone provider sensibly goes Dec 9 2012 which leaves no room for multiple interpretations.

In addition to those 4 possibilities, the year can be represented as 2012 and 12: we therefore have a total of 8 ways of representing the date. Our bank uses 2012 -12 24 for checks and (I think) 12 24 12 [December 24, 2012] for deposit slips.

About the only thing I’ve never seen is month year day or day year month. There are 12 possibilities and Canada uses 8 of them. So what date is it? Sigh!!! By the way, don’t get me started on Debit Cards. Or maybe present a puzzle about debit cards that I have to answer, or no puzzle point.

OK enough stalling. A birthday math sentence. That’s very hard for December 23, 1939. About the only thing I could come up with is 1+9+3+9 + 1 = 23 but there’s a 2 left over. Oh well I’ll add it and get 25. It’s Christmas. The spirits have done it all in one day.

One further note: Mary and I have birthdays that are separated by 21 days and her birthday comes first. That means that if her birthday is on a Tuesday, mine is also on a Tuesday, but more importantly, I know that Christmas is on a Thursday and I know when to get her gift. December 23 is actually a worse time to have a birthday than Christmas day. Everyone is rushing around preparing for Christmas. No time for birthdays.

Makes a person want to belong to the Bah Humbug! Club for Christmas.

Anonymous said...

Here is my personal math sentence:
9+7 - 5 x (1+1) = 8 - 2


Jerome said...

I'll tell you Maria, that's great going. I've barely come up with one

December 23, 1939

(1+2)*2^3 - [1*sqrt(9)^3 - sqrt(9)] = 0

I could make it
(1 + 2)*2^3 = 1*sqrt(9)^3 - sqrt(9)

Anonymous said...

9/9 + 8/2 = 4 - 1


Anonymous said...

fun problem!

Here is my birthday: 4.23.1970
Here is one math sentence for this date:
(3 x 9) + 20 = 47 x 1

With my birthday written as: 4.23.70
Here is one math sentence: 4 x 7 = 30 - 2

I kept thinking it would be great to come up with a math sentence in which the numbers appear in the same order as the date, but haven't found one yet for my bday date.


Anonymous said...

here's a math sentence for my birthday 04.23.1970 with the numbers in the same order:
0 x (42 + 3) = 197 x 0

with the zeros and zero multiplication, the problem becomes pretty trivial though.


Maria said...

Zeros come handy in this puzzle. Without them it is not as trivial as it looks. One of the few puzzles that are easier for kids than adults.

A puzzle point for everyone who played.

Jerome said...

My second one was in order. That's what made it so hard. I thought we were supposed to put in order.

Anonymous said...

4*(2 + 3) = 19 + 7^0

Anonymous said...


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