A Topological Puzzle

A mouse, a cat, and a dog are all away from their respective houses and you have to guide each of them home.  However, because the cat and the mouse are afraid of the dog and the mouse is also afraid of the cat, none of the paths can cross.  The following picture shows their positions as well as the locations of their houses.

ImageI gave this puzzle to Katie, and about 10 seconds later she presented me with this:

ImageThe labels here are in Russian, but they are identical to the English ones above.

I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly she solved it.  I was further amused when a few minutes after that she presented me with a puzzle of her own.

Katie and Ari are going to each others birthday parties and they can’t meet (not really sure what the exact reason was for that).

ImageShe was very happy that I took her puzzle just as seriously as she took mine.  I told her that it probably wasn’t as difficult as mine, but in the same spirit.



About aofradkin

I enjoy thinking about presenting mathematical concepts to young children in exciting and engaging ways.
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1 Response to A Topological Puzzle

  1. ivasallay says:

    Reblogged this on Find the Factors and commented:
    I didn’t take Topology in college, but I knew people who did. It looked pretty fun. I enjoyed solving it, and also looking at her daughter’s solution.


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