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Folding Paper in Half - Exponential Decay - Fraction Denominators Resemble Binary Numbers

I had the Mathletes folding a paper plate in half. They were only able to do this four times: 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16. The children noticed that each time the paper got a half smaller, the denominator of the fraction doubled like the binary numbers.

Converting Base 2 Binary Numbers to Base 10 Decimal

Over the last few weeks we have been exploring Base number systems different from our own decimal Base 10, which we take for granted. Our system (which uses 10 symbols) is much less efficient than the ancient Mayan vigesimal Base 20 system that uses only 3 symbols (a dot for 1, a stick for 5, and a shell for 0). 

Mayan Numbers: Base 20 Number System vs. Base 10

The Maya number system is very different from the system you use daily—the Maya used only three symbols to represent all numbers! They used a dot to represent 1, a line to represent 5, and a shell to


A logical extension to our triangle coordinates and classify game was finding the area of triangles.


After the Mathletes became experts at plotting coordinate points in either 1 or 4 quadrants, I created a game that would allow them to plot three points to create a triangle and then classify it as either acute, obtuse, or right and then classify it as either scalene or isosceles.