**Mathspig tried the m&m Algebra Challenge in her ICME 13 Workshop in Hamburg. **

**BUT … I bought PEANUT m&ms. OH Nooooooooo!**

**They were the WRONG SHAPE. Deformed m&ms bounced everywhere. All I could do was collect the m&ms in my gloved hands and hand them out to the workshop participants. They seemed to enjoy the failure. **

**But Mathspig does not give up that easily.**

**Here is the m&m ALGEBRA CHALLENGE with PLAIN m&ms. **

# The Great m+m ALGEBRA CHALLENGE

# Method:

**1. Open a packet of PLAIN m&ms. (Wear white Gloves like the m+ms)**

**2. TIP onto table. (Put a few books around the edge to define an area.)**

**3. Sort the m&ms into:**

**…m -UP pile.**

**…m-DOWN pile.**

**4. REMOVE the m-UP pile.**

**5. PICK up m-DOWN pile and TIP again.**

**6. REPEAT until only 1 m+m is left.**

**The pattern should follow the exponential equation here:**

**Did it work? Check it out below. **

**Who knew one family packet had 366 m+ms?**

**You’ll find a worked ‘theoretical’ example here.**

**Here’s the ANSWER:**

Try it. Middle school students have to see

that applying maths in the real world can be tricky but logical.

And a lot of FUN too.