Mr Man’s birthday

Students need to be systematic in finding dates of birth where the square of the year (the last two digits) gives the day and the month, e.g. 26/01/51, because 51^2=2601.

Students then need to estimate how many people might have been born on these dates, drawing on birth rates for different months and years, information about the distribution of population at different ages, etc.

+
Overview of task

Students need to be systematic in finding dates of birth where the square of the year (the last two digits) gives the day and the month, e.g. 26/01/51, because 51^2=2601. Students then need to estimate how many people might have been born on these dates, drawing on birth rates for different months and years, information about the distribution of population at different ages, etc.

+
Strand:

Number and Measures

+
Prior knowledge

Squaring two-digit numbers. Fermi estimation. Being systematic.

+
Relevance to Core Maths qualifications

  • AQA
  • C&G
  • Eduqas
  • Pearson/ Edexcel
  • OCR

+
Suggested approaches

This is suitable for small group work, with the opportunity for collaboration, research, discussion and debate.

+
Resources/documentation

Worksheet with description of scenario and key questions.

+
Relevant digital technologies

Excel could be used to generate suitable dates of birth.

The internet could be used to research birth rates relating to different dates.

+
Possible extensions

Students can investigate other dates with particular properties, e.g. 16/3/61 is a palindrome.

+
Acknowledgement

Developed by Richard Man at Bodmin College.