A Math Forum Project

1999 Mathematics Game

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For many years mathematicians, scientists, engineers and others interested in mathematics have played "year games" via e-mail and in newsgroups. We don't always know whether it is possible to write expressions for all the digits from 1 to 100 using only the numbers in the current year, but it is fun to try to see how many you can find.

As with many games, the rules for the Year Game can vary slightly. Teachers may wish to use different rules in their own classrooms. This Web page is intended for students in grades three through twelve with a general knowledge of mathematics.

Our rules: use the digits in the year 1999 and the operations of +, -, x, ÷, sqrt (square root), ^ (raise to a power), and ! (factorial), along with grouping symbols, to write expressions for the counting numbers 1 through 100. Please read and follow the rules carefully if you wish to have your solutions posted on this site.

Teachers may print out worksheets for students to record their findings, or print sheets of manipulatives for students to use.

Student solutions may be submitted starting January 1, 1999, using the Web form at the bottom of this page. We will begin to post student solutions on February 5, 1999. Student names, school names, and grades will appear as you enter them if your solution is posted. Your e-mail address will not appear on the Web page.

UPDATE: Expressions have been found for 99 of the numbers from 1 through 100. At this time we are only missing an expression for 68. If you can write an expression that uses the digits 1,9,9,9 and is equal to 68 please submit it.

You can use our Web form to enter as many different solutions as you find; however, you must complete the entire form for each submission. (You may not submit two solutions on one form.)


Answer Form

Your name:

Your e-mail address:

Your school's name:

Your grade: Your solution is for number:

Your solution (include only the expression equal to the number you choose, without using equal signs):


The Math Forum ** Judy Ann Brown ** 21 December 1999