Archive for June, 2008

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

I’m six notes on the trumpet that hold high regard;
To ask money for payment; or put on your card;
When a basketball player is rough with his guard;
And in battle, I’m rushing the enemy hard.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by Neel Mehta. See comments for answer.

Cymbeline Talk Show

Sunday, June 22nd, 2008

Well, I am pleased to report that the Cymbeline project turned out very well.

For their video project, the 8th grade class I was working with decided to create a modern-day talk show (instead of a reality show) with characters from Shakespeare’s Cymbeline as guests. The show includes scenes from the original play, an alternate ending, and a commercial for a Cymbeline video game… all written, performed, and produced by the students!

They presented their video at an in-school film festival, and represented their school at a citywide film festival hosted by my organization. And now, through the magic of the Internet, I share the video with you:

If you want to share this video with others, you can link directly to this post or embed the video from its TeacherTube page (where you can also watch the video if you have trouble loading it in here). We will also be featuring the video on the school’s home page.

UPDATE: The kids put the video on YouTube. It’s a much higher quality than what I was able to post to TeacherTube, so if you want to embed the video on your site, you should use that one.

Conundrum: Pic Tac Toe in 3D, Part IV

Saturday, June 21st, 2008

We haven’t had one of these in a while…

In a normal “Pic Tac Toe” puzzle, there are nine pictures in a 3×3 grid, like Tic-Tac-Toe. In each of the three rows, three columns, and two diagonals, there is a common theme that unites the three pictures. The challenge is to find the eight themes.

In this “Pic Tac Toe” puzzle, however, there are twenty-seven pictures in a 3x3x3 grid, like a Rubik’s Cube. In each of the nine rows, nine columns, nine pillars, eighteen lateral diagonals, and four cross-cube diagonals, there is a common theme that unites the three pictures. The challenge is to find the forty-nine themes.

Imagine stacking the three levels below on top of one another. For reference, and notation guidelines, check out my last 3D Pic Tac Toe, including the comments. The rules here are identical to that puzzle.

You can click on each image to see a larger version:

Top Level – Level A

Middle Level – Level B

Bottom Level – Level C

Please post whatever you come up with in the comments section.


UPDATE: Correct themes provided by Benjamin Baxter (3), Billie (24), and Neel Mehta (16). Alternate themes suggested by Benjamin Baxter (1), Billie (2), and Neel Mehta (5). See comments for discussion, or click here to skip right to the answers.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

I am read for the course, but I’m blue for the test;
Take the music from musicals, I am the rest;
I’m reserving a table or signing a guest;
And to enter a charge that completes the arrest.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by Benjamin Baxter. See comments for answer.

Conundrum: Nim, Part II

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

You have defeated Iachimo at his own game, and he’s not happy.

“I usually go first,” he says icily. “Surely you will allow me a rematch, and allow me to go first this time.”

You know that, with his standard set up using piles of 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, he can force a win by going first, so you decline. But he comes up with a surprising offer: you can increase the number of piles.

As before, the piles will start at 1 coin and will increase by 1 coin until the desired number of piles is reached. So if you decide to increase to six piles, the coin amounts must be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. You’ve only got a limited number of coins available, so you may not exceed ten piles.

Iachimo will go first and you will take turns drawing coins from the piles. On your turn, you may remove as many coins as you like from any one pile. The winner is the one who takes the last coin and leaves his opponent without a move.

“Double or nothing,” he dares you, with a bit of desperation in his voice. You’re not sure what would happen if you decline. It doesn’t matter, though, since you see a clear path to victory, even allowing Iachimo to go first.

How many piles do you set up? What’s your strategy for winning?

UPDATE: Problem solved by Alex. See comments for solution.

Friday Night Video

Friday, June 13th, 2008

Via The Shakespeare Geek, we learn of Madeline, who has made good progress on a project to record herself reading all of Shakespeare’s sonnets on YouTube.

These recordings stand out very favorably among the many who have put themselves speaking Shakespeare online. She doesn’t feel the need to over-emote, but instead trusts and enjoys the words of the poet. Shakespeare’s language seems to come very naturally to her, and the videos are a pleasure to watch. Also, I think because she’s so young, she brings a freshness and vitality to her readings, and makes the old poems feel relevant for a new generation.

Here she is doing a favorite of this blog, Sonnet LV:

More here.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, June 12th, 2008

I’m the dish, whether soup or the salad you chose;
I am super at football, like sugar or rose;
I’m the way you play ten-pin; in cricket, I’m throws;
And a trivia contest where teams can oppose.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by DeLisa. See comments for answer.

Thursday Morning Riddle

Thursday, June 5th, 2008

I’m the last formal head of the Soviet bloc;
I’m an Internet note; or the taste of the wok;
I’m a place to watch sports, or a concert of rock;
And marines who guard embassies all ’round the clock.

Who am I?

UPDATE: Riddle solved by DeLisa. See comments for answer.