Within the past few days, lots of people from numerous countries were captivated yet again by wonderful concerts seen live inside the Bach Concert Hall at Musica Mundi School, Waterloo, Belgium, or enjoyed online via top-quality broadcasts. My personal appreciation of the beauty of music, and its profound power to touch and heal, continues to grow.
I am especially grateful to Leonid Kerbel and Hagit Hassid-Kerbel, Musica Mundi School’s founders, who hired me three years ago to be the Mathematics teacher in their magical environment.
All the posts are free for everyone to enjoy, and today’s one is specially dedicated to Super Sigurd, the youngest of three children in a lovely Norwegian family with whom I often had the pleasure of doing fun Maths and Chess.
Sigurd is turning 11 today, and so we have lots of nice, sneaky surprises…!
It’s Wednesday, and W is the 23rd letter of the English alphabet. So, let’s start with the number 23.
Multiply by 19, because S (for Super Sigurd!) is the 19th letter of the alphabet.
Multiply by my favourite number, 3.
To crown this surprise, multiply by 11, Sigurd’s new age.
The result of 14421 is to wish Sigurd an unforgettable, happy birthday on 14.4.21=today !
Also, 14421 ÷ 11 = 1311,
like saying to Sigurd, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY (13 letters), 11 !”
Furthermore, it’s fun to note that, by changing just one digit, we have two ways of turning 1311 into a pretty palindrome…
Either change it to 1331, which equals 11 x 11 x 11
OR change it to 1111, which equals this blog post number times Sigurd’s new age: 101 x 11 = 1111.
It’s time now for Sigurd’s birthday chess puzzle…
Before revealing the chess solution, here’s a simple-looking yet rather enjoyable wee ‘word sum’ to increase the fun today…!
In ONE + ONE = TWO, each different letter stands for a different digit and each same letter stands for the same digit. The general digit options are 0-9, but neither O nor T can be 0 because ONE and TWO stand for proper three-digit numbers.
Your double fun challenge is to figure out the minimum possible value of ONE + ONE and also the maximum possible value of ONE + ONE if it equals TWO !
That’s a beautiful one + one for Sigurd’s 11th birthday, and yet it’s just a tiny illustration showing that, in Maths and everything created by God, there’s a limitless universe of surprises infinitely beyond our imagination still waiting to delight us for eternity in Heaven.
Sigurd’s Birthday Chess Puzzle Solution
Sigurd’s ONE + ONE = TWO Sneaky Birthday Maths Brainteaser Solution
In this TWO-story,
the minimum possible value of ONE + ONE is 412
the maximum possible value of ONE + ONE is 964.
Very warm congratulations for finding either or both of those values.
To conclude this article, I would like to wish Sigurd and everyone a really wonderful, happy day now.
With kindest wishes as always,
Paul M☺twani xxx
P.S. Even when he was a grade 1 primary school student several years ago, young Sigurd already loved to do great mental calculations, and he understood mathematical concepts such as squaring, with 122 = 144 being one of his favourite examples, not only on 14/4 ! So, as an extra birthday treat, we have the following b☺nus brainteaser f☺r Sigurd…
Can you discover a future year in which
the total of the year + Sigurd’s age on his birthday in that year
would together make a Square Number ?
God-willing as always, it is my hope and intention to publish a solution at the time of the next blog post, or possibly even sooner.
SOLUTION to Super Sigurd’s Bonus Brainteaser (being posted on 14 May 2021)
In the year 2063, Sigurd will be 53. Then, 2063+53=2116, which is equal to 46 squared, since 46 x 46 = 2116.
The meaning of the name Helen is ‘bright, shining light’, and that well describes Mrs. Helen Coyne-Wincott, a lovely English teacher colleague of mine at Musica Mundi School.
In addition to being fluent in several languages, Helen is also very good at Mathematics, and she’s a highly talented musician, too, with special expertise on a particular instrument… You’ll discover which one, and lots more, in the following feast of fun puzzles that is an early celebration for Helen’s birthday coming in 3 days’ time! I have Helen’s permission to post numerous surprises. So, let’s magnify Helen’s enjoyment, OK!
Just a few days ago, I received a lovely surprise message from Bob Mitchell, a Scottish chess friend whom I haven’t seen for very many years. I remembered Bob immediately, as he was always friendly and funny as well as being a talented, attacking chess player. The descriptive words FUN BATTLE GOER come quickly to mind!
Here’s a sneaky word puzzle in Bob’s honour: rearrange the letters of
FUN BATTLE GOER
to make a proper 13-letter English word which also describes Bob!
Three of my dear colleagues at the beautiful Musica Mundi School (where I work as the Mathematics teacher) are Peter (the House Father), Annabel (the House Mother) and Jacques Rouvier, one of the great Music instructors.
The ‘Orchestral Feeling’ title of this article was inspired partly by the wonderful way in which the entire adult team at the school cares so well for all the students. It is also a tribute to this heartening, energizing belief of Jacques and many others: If you do what you do with real, true feeling from your mind, heart and soul, then the voice and emotion behind all that you wish to express can impact and move others as if you were speaking with the power of a full orchestra.
It is with great pleasure that I thank everyone who participated in the ‘Good Lives Global Prize Competition’ (see Blog Post #80).
Andy H. from Scotland was the very first person to reply with all the mathematical puzzles completely correct. Andy loves challenge puzzles so much that he simply wanted to enjoy them without being given a prize. So, in recognition of his excellent attitude, we have a bonus puzzle in Andy’s honour, down below.
Before then, I want to congratulate Quintijn van Heek (an A-Level Maths student of mine) and Krissy Teng (another great student at the beautiful Musica Mundi School in Waterloo, Belgium) for also solving all the mathematical puzzles. Well done, Quintijn and Krissy!
Welcome to this ‘Good Lives Global Prize Competition’ with free entry for everyone of every country! The more puzzles you solve, the better for sure, but you may possibly still receive some prize for submitting some good answers even if they’re not all perfect. So, please don’t be shy! Just go ahead and enjoy the puzzles (detailed below), and don’t hesitate to send in your answers by email to email@example.com, preferably by Sunday 17 January; the sooner, the better for you!
It’s quite late now in Belgium, but I still really wanted to write this wee article tonight as a nice, extra boost for Elizabeta, a truly outstanding Maths student (at Musica Mundi School in Waterloo, Belgium) who always produces terrific work!
Let’s have a fun word puzzle, right now!
Leave out just the very last letter of I DREAM CHESS, and use all of the other ten letters to make the name of a famous Greek mathematician from long ago…