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# Practical Worksheet

Name : ____________________________

Date : ____________

Problem statement :
Given a three-digit number (all three individual digits are between 0 and 5), make a four
digit number by putting 'a' as the right most digit (4 < a < 10). Then add 'a' to the
resulting four digits number and remove the right-most digit to obtain another three digit
number. If the result is 424, what is the original number?

Instructions

If you wish, you have 15 minutes to solve the problem without explicitly using Polya's model.
Do your work in the space for Stage III.
If you are stuck after 10 minutes, use Polya's model and complete all the stages I - IV.
If you can solve the problem, you must proceed to do stage IV - Check and Extend.

## Stage I : Understand the problem

(You may have to return to this section a few times. Number each attempt to
understand the problem accordingly as Attempt 1, Attempt 2, etc.)
(a) Write down your feelings about the problem. Does it bore you? scare you?
challenge you?
(b) Write down the parts you do not understand now or that you misunderstood in your
previous attempt.
(c) Write down your attempt to understand the problem; and state the heuristics you
used.

Attempt 1
a) The question seems challenging to me as there are no numbers except at
the end when they gave the final number.
b) Have to be clear that a' is the last digit to the original number before adding
a' again to the resulting number and that the digits of the original number
are all less than 5.
c) I shall use trial and error to get the answer.
Attempt 2
a) I had gotten stuck on the first try and it bothers me that I could not solve this
question.
b) I read the question again and noticed that a' is between 4 and 10. This is a
major hint to answering the question that I have missed out earlier.
c) I shall use equations to solve the problem.

Practical Worksheet
Stage II : Devise a plan
(You may have to return to this section a few times. Number each new plan accordingly
as Plan 1, Plan 2, etc.)
(a) Write down the key concepts that might be involved in solving the problem.
(b) Do you think you have the required resources to implement the plan?
(c) Write out each plan concisely and clearly.

Plan 1 :
a) Algebraic addition is used for this problem.
b) Yes, it looks like addition of algebraic numbers.
c) First, use 410 and make it into 410a. Then add a as the last digit of 410a
and remove the last digit. Finally, compare against 424. From there, I will
attempt to derive the original number.
Plan 2 (Re-visit Stage I and II if Plan 1 fails) :
a) I shall let the hundred, tens and single digit of the three-digit number be x, y
and z respectively. Algebraic manipulation will be required to solve this
problem.
b) I believe I can solve this problem with my knowledge of algebraic
manipulation as well as my new understanding of a'.
c) I will let x be the hundredth digit, y be the tenth digit and z be the single digit.
Then I would add a' to the end to form a four digit number 1000x + 100y +
10z + a. Then I will add a to it and finally remove the last digit from the
resulting number. By comparing with the number given in the question, I can
solve for the original number.

Practical Worksheet
Stage III : Carry out the plan
(You may have to return to this section a few times. Number each implementation accordingly
as Plan 1, Plan 2, etc., or even Plan 1.1, Plan 1.2, etc. if there are two or more attempts using
Plan 1.)
(i) Write down in the Control column, the key points where you make a decision or observation,
for eg., go back to check, try something else, look for resources, or totally abandon the plan.
(ii) Write out each implementation in detail under the Detailed Mathematical Steps column.

## Detailed Mathematical Steps

Control

Attempt 1
Let the original three-digit number be 410.
After adding a' as the last digit to the number, I have
410a.
After adding a' again to the above number, I have
410a + a
The final number is 424. Comparing, we have
xyza + a = 865n

## Now this is looking

strange as after
adding a' to it, I do
not get one number
by itself
The two numbers
cannot be
compared

Attempt 2
Let x be the hundredth digit, y be the tenth digit and z be the
single digit of the three-digit number.
Hence, the number is 100x + 10y + z.
After adding a' as the last digit to the number, I have
1000x + 100y + 10z + a
Now I add an a' to this four-digit number, I have
1000x + 100y + 10z + a + a = 1000x + 100y + 10z + 2a.
However, since a' is between 4 and 10, I know that 2a is in
the tens. Hence, I can rearrange the number above into
1000x + 100y + 10 (z + 1) + n, where n is the single digit of
2a.
Finally, I remove the last digit of the above number as
directed by the question.
100x + 10y + z + 1 = 424
Thus,
100x = 400 x = 4
10y = 20 y = 2
z+1=4z=3
3

I believe my
workings and

Practical Worksheet
Original number is 423.

## Stage IV : Check and Extend

(a) Write down how you checked your solution.
(b) Write down your level of satisfaction with your solution. Write down a sketch of any
alternative solution(s) that you can think of.
(c) Give one or two adaptations, extensions or generalisations of the problem. Explain
succinctly whether your solution structure will work on them.

## [Attach a new page if you wish to]

Practical Worksheet

## question again, using different values of a' to verify my answer.

b) I am very satisfied with my answer and I do not think there is a better
alternative solution than mine.
c) Generalisation
(1) The number of digits of the original is n instead of three and the
final number is p, where p is a n-digit number.
Extension
(1) The original 3-digit number is doubled before a is added as the
right most digit and added to the resulting 4-digit number. If the final
number is 685, what is the original number?
To solve the generalisation,
Let x1 be the first digit, x2 be the second digit and so on till xn be the nth digit of
this original n-digit number.
Hence, the number is 10nx1 + 10n-1x2 + + xn. --- (1)
Now I add an a' as the right most digit to this n-digit number, I have
10n+1x1 + 10nx2 + + 10xn + a
Now I add a' to this resulting (n + 1)-digit number, I have
10n+1x1 + 10nx2 + + 10xn + a + a
= 10n+1x1 + 10nx2 + + 10xn + 2a
However, since a' is between 4 and 10, I know that 2a is in the tens. Hence, I
can rearrange the number above into
10n+1x1 + 10nx2 + + 10 (xn +1) + z, where z is the single digit of 2a.
Finally, I remove the last digit of the above number as directed by the question.
10nx1 + 10n-1x2 + + xn + 1 --- (2)
Thus, comparing (1) and (2), we can clearly see that given the final number p,
we can obtain the original number by simply subtracting one to get the original
number ie. original number is p-1.

Practical Worksheet
To solve the extension,
Let x be the hundredth digit, y be the tenth digit and z be the single digit of the
three-digit number.
Hence, the number is 100x + 10y + z.
Doubling the number, I get
100 (2x) + 10 (2y) + 2z.
After adding a' as the last digit to the number, I have
1000 (2x) + 100 (2y) + 10 (2z) + a
Now I add an a' to this four-digit number, I have
1000 (2x) + 100 (2y) + 10 (2z) + a + a = 1000 (2x) + 100 (2y) + 10 (2z) + 2a.
However, since a' is between 4 and 10, I know that 2a is in the tens. Hence, I
can rearrange the number above into
1000 (2x) + 100 (2y) + 10 (2z + 1) + n, where n is the single digit of 2a.
Finally, I remove the last digit of the above number as directed by the question.
100 (2x) + 10 (2y) + 2z + 1 = 635
Thus,
100 (2x) = 600 x = 3
10 (2y) = 80 y = 4
2z + 1 = 5 z = 2
Original number is 342