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The King's Chessboard (Picture Puffins) Paperback – July 1, 1993


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The King's Chessboard (Picture Puffins) + One Grain Of Rice: A Mathematical Folktale + Anno's Mysterious Multiplying Jar
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 and up
  • Grade Level: 1 - Preschool
  • Series: Picture Puffins
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin Books; Reprint edition (July 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140548807
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140548808
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 0.1 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #298,688 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Here is a tale full of exotic, old-world flavor which takes place at a palace in ancient India. Detailed drawings show a fortress made of tall minarets and spires, heralds astride decorated elephants, servants bearing shields, and a turbaned ruler bedecked in rich jewels. The story itself is a parable about a powerful king and a wise man whose simple requesta grain of rice doubled for each square of the king's chessboardproves to be an impossible challenge for the royal granary. A amusing scenario unfolds as the amount of rice multiplies daily, causing great curiosity among the villagers and embarrassment to the prideful king, who learns a valuable lesson. Ages 5-up.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-6 The king of the title is an Indian potentate who receives a service from a wiseman and insists on repaying the fa vor. The wiseman finally requests the familiar mathematical puzzle of the chessboard, on whose first square is placed a single grain of rice, on whose second square is placed two grains, four on the third square, and so on. The king, who is too proud to admit that he can't calculate the sum total of the gift, foolishly grants the wish, at least until it becomes clear that it will wipe out his stock. Finally, in spite of his pride, he takes back his repayment, justly em barrassed because of his stupidity and the wiseman's obvious generosity in not wanting a repayment in the first place. The story may be recognizable to older readers familiar with mathemati cal puzzles, but it will be new to begin ning mathematicians and readers. The tale is simply told, and the primitive watercolor pictures, with some bright jewel tones to set off the otherwise an tique cast of the colors, aptly comple ment this original folktale. Although the text is too complicated for begin ners to master on their own, this picture book is so masterfully told that they will listen to it attentively. Ruth K. MacDonald, Department of English, New Mexico State Univ . , Las Cruces
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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This year I plan to use the document camera and this book to do the activity.
acarter
I facilitate a Game Theory and Multicultural Math workshop for ages 9-12 and used this book during our study of the Tower of Hanoi.
Amazon Customer
The most important lesson here, IMHO, is the book teaches that pride can get in the way of good judgement.
Kenneth J. Neveski

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 39 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 30, 1997
Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent resource for elementary teachers to use with math problem solving. Students can use the chess board and rice to solve the problem in the book. Students can measure an ounce of rice and figure how much rice is in a pound. Using this literature in a math class will motivate and enhance learning. I highly recommend it for educators.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth J. Neveski on January 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
My 7 year old, mathematically gifted son loves this story. First of all, he loves chess; and secondly, he loves numbers (and the related concepts) even more. Thus this book has the best of both worlds for him.

The most important lesson here, IMHO, is the book teaches that pride can get in the way of good judgement.

The story also teaches the important concept of one-to-one relationships (ie, functions) with numbers. Any math teacher will tell you, it's not the numbers per se that are important, but the relationships and interactions that are important.

Lastly, the story illustrates the math concept of geometric progression, how after a few turns, little number 'explode' into big ones.

Overall, excellent story that teaches both social values and mathematical concepts.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Joe Dirt on June 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
Have you ever paid the price for being a little too nice? "The King's Chessboard" was about a proud king in Deccan, India who paid the price for rewarding a wise man that didn't want to be rewarded. The King asked the wise man what would his reward be. The wise man said serving the King was his reward, but the King insisted on rewarding the servant. So, the wise man asked for one grain of rice. Then, each day for 64 days the wise man would recieve twice as much than the day before for each square on his chessboard. Things soon got out of hand because they were now giving the wise man tons of rice. By the end of the period they would have given out 274,877,906,944 tons of rice. The King had to stop the wise man from recieving these huge amounts of rice. In the end, the king would learn how easy it is for pride to make a fool of someone, even a king.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 24, 2006
Format: Paperback
I facilitate a Game Theory and Multicultural Math workshop for ages 9-12 and used this book during our study of the Tower of Hanoi. This book offered a wonderful way to open the discussion of exponential possibility. The illustrations and story are capturing and make the concept of exponents easy to grasp. Further, it takes place in India which was perfect for the math around the world teme. Loved it!
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Format: Paperback
My students loved the mathematical concepts in the book, and were especially intrigued by the size of the numbers that were eventually involved. It is also a great companion piece to One Grain of Rice, by Demi, which is a different retelling of the same Indian folk tale. The slightly different moral, and the differing characters, make for a good exercise in comparison and contrast.
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By George Taylor on June 2, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
easy reading for grades 3 and up. useful as a lesson or math activity. great as a book for parents and teachers
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