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Short Mysteries You Solve with Math Review by Megan Russell

One Minute Math Mysteries
Eric Yoder and Natalie Yoder
Science Naturally!
725 Eighth Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003

Solving mysteries using math is a great way to practice math, logic and critical thinking skills in a fun way. “Short Mysteries You Solve with Math” is a book for kids ages 10-14. It is written in both Spanish and English, which is great if you or your child is bilingual or learning Spanish or English. The book is over 200 pages long with 45 math mysteries. Each mystery has its own two-page spread. The left side is written in English and the right side is written in Spanish. The answer to the mystery is in the same format when you turn the page – the English on the left and Spanish on the right. There is a short glossary and index at the back of the book.

The mysteries take about a minute to read and are in story form. The stories are divided into categories: Math at Home, Math Outside, Math at Play, Math Every Day, and Science Bonus Section. The mystery stories vary from finding the amount of paint you need to paint a playhouse to measuring nautical distance to calculating batting averages. The answers to the mysteries are on the next page, continued in the same story format. The answers include explanations and examples, and sometimes go beyond the simple mystery to give you something deeper to think about.

I used “Short Mysteries You Solve with Math” as part of our family time at night. I would read the mystery to all the kids, even my husband sometimes. They would use a marker board and marker if they needed to write something out. Some of the mysteries were pretty hard to figure out! We would have to read the answers and still do a little figuring to understand the answer. Other mysteries would be pretty easy and the kids could figure the answers out quickly.

“Short Mysteries You Solve with Math” sells for $12.95 for a 224 page paperback, or $11.99 as an e-book. There are more books in the series, including “65 Short Mysteries You Solve with Science”, “65 More Mysteries You Solve with Science”, and 65 Short Mysteries You Solve with Math”. I would love to get one of the science mystery books to use with my kids. It would be a great addition to a homeschool morning basket, family time, or any math program as a supplement.

-Product review by Megan Russell, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, October 2017