# Getting Carried Away – by Ants

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.

# Getting Carried Away – by Ants

November 14, 2017

And yet another wild fan question: Sophia Y. asked, how many ants could pick you up and carry you? Ants are famous for being strong: a leafcutter ant can carry 50 times its own weight! Of course, an ant weighs only 1/200th of a gram at most. So that big ant can carry only about 1/4 gram. A gram is only 1/28th of an ounce, and an ounce is 1/16th of a pound…so it would take several hundred ants to pick up each pound of the person. Luckily, there are lots of ants to help out: scientists think there are about 1 million trillion ants on Earth, or one quintillion — and that together they weigh the same as all of us humans! So let’s not get carried away here.

Wee ones: Who has more legs, you or one of those 6-legged ants?

Little kids: If 4 ants can pick up a 1-gram paper clip, how many ants does it take to pick up 2?  Bonus: Which needs more ants to pick it up, a 16-oz bag of chips or a 24-ounce bag of cookies?

Big kids: If you carried a truck that weighed 50 times your weight, how heavy would that be? (You can round off your weight to the nearest multiple of 10 if you like.)  Bonus: If we round off that it takes 500 ants to carry 1 pound, how many ants does it take to carry you?