m+m maths 3: how many m+ms will kill you?

June 25, 2015

Maths topics 10

mathspig death by choc

mathspig m&m maths 3a

mathspig 12 yr old

mathspig m&m maths 3b

mathspig m&m maths 3c

mathspig 14 yo

mathspig m&m maths 3d

mathspig m&m maths 3e

You can find more Death by Chocolate Maths here and here.


m+m maths 4: How many m+ms will kill my dog?

June 22, 2015

Maths topics 10

Mathspig m&m maths 7aa

mathspig m+m maths 7b

You can find more Death by Chocolate Maths here and here.


m+m maths 5: how many m+ms will kill my cat?

June 22, 2015

LD50 of  Theobromine in cats is 200mg.

According to The Royal Society of Chemistry cats are hypersensitive to Theobromine but, as cats cannot taste sweetness, they are rarely poisoned.

mathspig smiling cat 2

You can find more Death by Chocolate Maths here and here.


m+m maths 6: How many m+ms will kill my pet rat?

June 18, 2015

Maths topics 10 According to the dailytech website rats show addiction to chocolate including m&ms mathspig m&m maths 8

Picture 3

mathspig m&m maths  953 m+ms would be  a little over a shot glass full of candy. Toxicology Data Network link. You can find more Death by Chocolate Maths here and here.


m+ms maths 7: how many m+ms will kill my pet mouse?

June 17, 2015

Maths topics 10

mathspig m&m maths 10

Theobromine is the poison found in chocolate. The LD50 is the Lethal Dose for 50% of animals to die. The LD50 information for mice can be found at The Toxicology Data Network

You can find more Death by Chocolate Maths here and here.


MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig MathsPig …………………………………………………. with Kerry Cue

May 21, 2015

Mathspig Hairy

Hellooooo My Little Hairy Creatures,

This week we have hairy maths coming out our ears, my friends. Not only will you find some  interesting hairy facts and figures below, you will find plenty of hairy math activities for hair crazy middle school students:

Hair Maths 1: The curly problem with curly hair

Hair Maths 2: Why CGI needs maths

Hair Maths 3: How OLD is your hair?

Hair Maths 4: The Great SHAMPOO rip off



Mathspig hair maths punishment

Mathspig has always had a THING about hair maths. And here are some funny, outrageous and challenging maths problems involving hair:

Eurovision Hair Math: When will Jedward’s hair be as tall as Jedward?

 Really Weird Geometric hair

How weird are maths teachers haircuts?

Mass Murderer or Maths teacher?



HOW MANY BAD HAIR DAYS in your life?

According to The Manchester Confidential a consumer survey found that the average British female will endure 7,332 bad hair days in a lifetime!!!!

How many years is that? Do the maths.

7,332/365 = 20.09 years 

0.09 x 365 = 32.85 = 33 days

O MY GOODNESS, 20 years and 33 days of BAD HAIR. 

Makes you wanna go back to bed or shave your head.

Hoo Roo




Hair Maths 1: The curly problem with curly hair

May 6, 2015

pic 0 mathspig hair maths 2


pic 1 Mathspig the curly Q

More about Troy’s $million hair here. Hair statistics including how many hairs a human has on their head here.

Mathspig studied hair chemistry at uni. Tricky stuff. Put simply, hair is made of long strands of protein called keratin held together by sulphur (and some hydrogen) bonds. To curl hair, the keratin strands in the outer curve of each hair has to be stretched with curling tongs or hair curlers, heated and dried. The bonds in each hair reform with one side longer than the other … Hence, the hair curls like gift-wrap ribbon. But high humidity allows hair to reabsorb water and straightened hair just goes psycho curly again!

pic 2 mathspig Hair PermThis excellent hair diagram comes from The Chemistry of Shampoo and Conditioner, in an article by EMMA Dux for the Royal Australian Chemical Institute

Some people are born with hair follicles that produce keratin at different rates across the follicle. They have curly hair. Hair perms chemically break and reform the sulphur bonds while the hair is held in small curlers (curly hair) or a very big curlers(relatively straight hair.) thus permanently curling the hair.

Here’s the Maths:

Curly hair looks like a 3D Helix.

pic 3 Helix Graph and Equation MathspigMore on 3D helix maths here

But, in fact, one strand of curled hair looks more like a spiral staircase.

The outer edge of the staircase is longer than the inner edge.

pic 5 HELIX spiral staircase

 pic 6 formula for curly hair

 More helix maths here.


Mathspig doesn’t expect Middle School students to plot a 3D Helix. But if they have started TRIGONOMETRY then they can see that the maths they are studying is used in CGIs for films and computer games in this case to generate realistic curly hair!!!! That’s cool. This maths was needed to model Merida’s curly hair in  BRAVE.

pic 7 Merida's Curly hair


Some middle school students could calculate some points on the helix.

Now students must be introduced to radians.

Simple EXPLANATION: Angles eg. 300 are not useful in calculations but fractions are very useful.

Eg. The circumference of a circle:

C = 2πr

Now imagine if you scan with a floodlight set at a radius of 1 km. So:

C = 2π

So the circumference is 2π.

You scan ¼ of a circle, the distance the light moves is ¼(2π)

or ½ π or 1.57 km (see below)

This measurement of an angle is in RADIANS.

00     = 0 circle = 0

450   = 1/8 circle = 2π/ 8 = 2 (3.14) /8 = 0. 79

900   = 1/4 circle = ½ π = ½ (3.14) = 1.57

1350   = 3/8 circle = ¾ π = ¾ (3.14) = 2.36

1800= 1/2 circle = π = 3.14

2250   = 5/8 circle = 5/4 π = 5/4(3.14) = 3.93

2700 = 3/4 circle = 3/2 π = 4.71

3150   = 7/8 circle = 7/4 π = 7/4 (3.14) = 5.50

3600 = 1 circle = 2π = 6.28


You will find Cos  tables at NASA Sine tables at Mathhelp

 Mathspig 3D helix table

Answer here: Answers- 3D Helix Table

 Advanced students may want to look at what the Uber Geek 3D Helix generating program at the free graph website PLOTLY here.


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