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The Kid Should See This

The Alien Pyramid Riddle

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Educators & upper elementary or middle school students: Before you watch the video for this Alien Pyramid riddle (or at least, before you watch the solution), try these Number Pyramids by lesson creator Henri Picciotto. He writes:

“Download the worksheet, which includes some teacher notes in the back.

“Your students will also need some blank pyramids on which they can experiment.”

the three pyramids

“Possible follow-up: I scripted a condensed version of this unit for a TED-Ed animated riddle. I recommend only showing this to your students after doing the activities I shared above, because the video jumps quickly to the final question, thus not allowing for a full exploration of the ideas.”


“On the other hand, after they have done and discussed the worksheets, students probably would enjoy the animation, and appreciate the explanations that follow the pause.”

Figure out how the last civilization lived on this desert planet with not one but two pauses to figure out the number pattern and the central number of the sealed pyramid. Read the set up below:

pause the video

“Today is the anniversary of the best-worst day of your life. The best part was discovering a subterranean city on Mars. The worst part was when you lost contact with Earth. You and the other 99 scientists have spent the year engineering your survival, but you’re almost out of water and solutions.

The TED-Ed animation was directed by Igor Coric, Artrake Studio. Follow this with more of Picciotto’s Number Puzzles.

Then try more math + TED-Ed videos, including:
Can you solve the locker riddle?
The Multiplying Rabbits Riddle
• Can you solve the honeybee riddle?
Can you solve the virus riddle?
Can you solve the penniless pilgrim riddle?

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