Thursday, 21 January 2016

Numbers in different bases

We've been talking about our "base ten" number system. But what does that really mean? What would a not base ten?

We know how our system works. There are ten digits: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9. When we get to ten we just start reusing the digits. Here's a model of our system
We probably count in tens like this because we have ten fingers.
But what if we only had six fingers? How would we count then? How would this sloth count?
It would only have the digits 0 1 2 3 4 5 
It's counting would look more like this:
We carried on in this vein. How might this creature, made by Orla, count? Would it count in base nine with it's nine fingers?

Like this
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 16 18 20...
We explored how to represent other bases with Cuisenaire rods.

We annotated our photos. Here's Felix's:
Some of us wrote about it in our maths journals:
Edward has written a post about counting in base 2.

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