Freeze-Falls

Here's your nightly math! Just 5 quick minutes of number fun for kids and parents at home. Read a cool fun fact, followed by math riddles at different levels so everyone can jump in. Your kids will love you for it.

Freeze-Falls

January 9, 2015

It’s turned cold this week in a lot of places, and one of those places is Iceland. You can guess from the name that this island is pretty darn cold a lot of the time, since it lies far north at the edge of the Arctic Ocean. But that hasn’t stopped people from visiting the awesome Godafoss Waterfall to take pictures of it. The name means “waterfall of the gods,” and you need almost god-like powers to get there: you have to make a tough drive through the mountains, and then stand in subzero windy weather to photograph the falls. The bigger problem is that the falling water sprays everywhere in the strong wind, coating the camera lens with ice and forcing the photographer to wipe it off over and over. But as you see from these amazing pictures of icicles, spray and sky, the work is worth it.

Wee ones: Which is colder, a mountain where it’s 14 degrees or one where it’s 12 degrees?

Little kids: If you take 5 hours to fly to Iceland and 4 hours to drive to the falls, how long does it take you to get there?  Bonus: If you then take 3 hours to snap pictures and then take the same drive and flight home, how long does the whole trip take to get those photos?

Big kids: The waterfalls are about 32 feet high. If you hang from a helicopter 43 feet above that to take pictures, how high above the ground are you?  Bonus: Just as we can use inches or centimeters for distance, we can measure temperature in Celsius or Fahrenheit. The Fahrenheit number is 9/5 of the Celsius number plus 32. One photographer faced negative 15 degrees C weather…what is that in Fahrenheit?

 

 

 

Answers:
Wee ones: The 12-degree mountain: the smaller the number, the colder the temperature!

Little kids: 9 hours.  Bonus: 21 hours, since you add the 3 hours, then another 9 to get home.

Big kids: 75 feet up.  Bonus: +5 degrees.

And thank you Zachary T. for this amazing webpage!

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About the Author

Laura Overdeck

Laura Overdeck

Laura Bilodeau Overdeck is founder and president of Bedtime Math Foundation. Her goal is to make math as playful for kids as it was for her when she was a child. Her mom had Laura baking while still in diapers, and her dad had her using power tools at a very unsafe age, measuring lengths, widths and angles in the process. Armed with this early love of numbers, Laura went on to get a BA in astrophysics from Princeton University, and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business; she continues to star-gaze today. Laura’s other interests include her three lively children, chocolate, extreme vehicles, and Lego Mindstorms.

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