Lazy Toad Puzzles
(Matej Veselovac, 2019)
Matej saw the jumping frogs puzzle on numberphile and was inspired to extend the exploration to lily pads linked together – but not necessarily in a line. The patterns he explored are called trees, but that really just means that from any lilypad there is exactly one connected path to get to any other lily pad. If you have not seen the original jumping frogs puzzle you might want to watch the video below – paying special attention to the lazy toads.
PS. Matej has created a free app for this puzzle. Here is the link.
PPS. Matej has listed all solutions for trees with less than fifteen nodes here.
PPPS. Contact me: gord at mathpickle.com with any puzzling ideas. I’ll give you full credit and we can have fun letting the world discover your puzzle.
Standards for Mathematical Practice
MathPickle puzzle and game designs engage a wide spectrum of student abilities while targeting the following Standards for Mathematical Practice:
MP1 Toughen up!
This is problem solving where our students develop grit and resiliency in the face of nasty, thorny problems. It is the most sought after skill for our students.
MP3 Work together!
This is collaborative problem solving in which students discuss their strategies to solve a problem and identify missteps in a failed solution. MathPickle recommends pairing up students for all its puzzles.
MP6 Be precise!
This is where our students learn to communicate using precise terminology. MathPickle encourages students not only to use the precise terms of others, but to invent and rigorously define their own terms.
MP7 Be observant!
One of the things that the human brain does very well is identify pattern. We sometimes do this too well and identify patterns that don't really exist.