Bat Jamboree by Kathi Appelt introduces the triangular number pattern as bats assemble for the final number beginning with 10 bats in the bottom row, 9 in the next row, etc. to the very top row with 1 bat. Students are introduced to the 55 bats in formation and their various acts but the book "isn't over until the bat lady sings."
Students will enjoy this introduction to an important mathematical pattern. Teachers can find many problems that build upon this triangular number pattern and extend the experience.
- Annual Fall Parade challenges students to use the triangular pattern to figure out how many students are in the fourth grade. Given the number of full rows, students must apply the pattern and use effective recording (picture, table, etc.) to explain their reasoning.
- Candy Corn presents a triangular numbers problem using a candy corn pattern. Younger students might use candy corn to model the problem. A sample solution shows how older students might use an input-output table to model the pattern and find the solution without the use of manipulatives.
- See more Bat Activities in Mathwire's Math Activity Themes: Bats collection.