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Dear Mitch,

You mentioned you'd have one of your "super-challenge" problems for Thanksgiving.

Is it coming?




Dear Fred,

Yes it is; in fact, here it is:

A series of weighings is shown below.

All items on the scales are small toys to be used as decorations for a Thanksgiving party. There are four different kinds of toys - toy 'drumsticks', toy 'turkey platters', toy 'Pilgrim hats', and toy figures of a 'Native American'.

Going from top to bottom, the first three scales (scale A, scale B, and scale C) are balanced and complete. But the fourth scale (scale D) is not.

After taking a careful look at the scales below and analyzing the information they provide, try to problem-solve to figure out how many toy turkey platters must be put on the empty side of scale D in order to form a balance with the left-hand side of that scale, which, as depicted in the ilustration, is weighed down by just one toy drumstick?

(Good luck; this is definitely one of those problems that most people find more challenging than they initially think it will be!)



Thanksgiving Math Challenge