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The Kid Should See This

A Riddle of Ice and Fire Dragons

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“It’s your first day as Center Realm’s official cartographer, and you’ve already got a big problem. Center Realm is home to three elder dragons: two ice, one fire, and they’ve lived in harmony for centuries. But scouts have sighted three fire dragons and five ice dragons flying towards the region…”

How will you create three new regions on the island in a way that keeps all four fire dragons and seven ice dragons satisfied? “It isn’t difficult to create three new regions,” the narrator explains. “What is more challenging is to make sure the result will keep each dragon away from its own kind.”

incoming dragons
This TED-Ed lesson is by math educator Henri Picciotto, with direction by Igor Coric, Artrake Studio. To figure it out, grab a paper and a few color pencils, or use these downloadable (and drawable!) maps. Then hit pause at the 1m30s mark.

edges and corners
Ah, but this TED-Ed video comes with two puzzles and three dragon types. The rules apply to the second challenge, too. You must end up with 7 ice, 6 fire, and 4 lightning dragon regions.

second island map
Related reading: The four color theorem.

Related logic and map videos include:
Can you solve the penniless pilgrim riddle?
• The Sea Monster Riddle
The Fire Crystal Riddle and proof by contradiction
• Creating cut-paper maps with illustrator Christian Robinson
• How to Make a Navigational Chart, a Met Kids activity

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