Problem of the Month: RACECAR

Submitted by John Bookston


If you looked at or used the last Problem of the Month, RADAR, below is an extension of that problem and a second challenge that requires a different analysis.

Challenge 1: Start at any "R."  You may move left, right, up or down. (You may use the same box twice). Explain how there are 784 ways to spell racecar.

Challenge 2: Start at the top or the bottom R.  You may move up, down or diagonally up or down.  (You may use the same box twice). Explain how there are 564 ways to spell racecar.

Enjoy exploring and good luck.

The three basic documents I give students when doing a Problem of the Month are attached again here.

              Problem of the Month Procedure

              Problem of the Month Grading Rubric

              Problem of the Month Time Management Sheet

As your hint for this problem, the number of ways of getting to each "e" must be found and squared (to get back to an "r"). There is symmetry as to the outside two "e's," the next pair of "e's" and the third pair of "e's" as a step in working smart. Enjoy and look for a little improvement in your students' ability to explain their thinking process.

© ATMIM (Assoc. of Teachers of Mathematics in Mass.)

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