The Warehouse

The abandoned warehouse has not been used in years. The small city windows are all boarded up. As you stare through the open door, the shadows seem to dnace menacingly, creeping ever closer towards you. As you step cautiously inside, you are hit with the smell of rotting flesh. The sound of dripping draws you down one dull, damp corridor after another. The old rusty doors on either side of you refuse to open. They feel cold and slimy. You come across a grand hall, stacked to the ceiling with cardboard boxes. Bubble wrap and other packaging is scattered around carelessly. Someone was looking for something. As you walk towards some steep steps leading to the next floor, you feel as though you are being watched. A cold breeze blows towards you, willingly you to turn back. You can hear footsteps around the corner. As you walk towards the noise, you see what seems to be red paint scattered on the floor. Turning the corner into an office, you see papers in disorganised heaps on the floor. The light bulb above you begins to crackle and flicker in anticiption. You walk down a passageway into a small room. A beam of light, seemingly from nowhere, shines onto an old, dusty book. As you open it intrigued, you discover what it is; a diary of a young girl. The last page is not finished, it end in a long line going across the page and  you notice there are scratch marks on a neaby box. You can smell smoke, as if someone has lit a fire next to you. In the adjoinging room, there is a small fireplace with a raging fire burning inside. Heat and light leads you towards the discovery of shelf upon shelf of plants in black, plastic pots, as if someone had turned the wall had been turned into an indoor greenhouse. Perplexed, you move on. The last room upstairs is completely empty except for a single bloodstained cloth. You go back down to the ground floor by a creaky lift. Just as you are about to leave, you hear the sound of smashing glass. A hole in the wall takes you to an unlit room you missed before, with a sturdy iron door. In the corner you see what seems to be a life-size doll, but as you come closer you realise it is a young girl, about 13, lying motionless on the floor. The pieces of the puzzle finally piece themselves together in your mind. You run for the door but it slowly closes in front of you. You realise where you are, and why no one dares to come here. It is the place for a murderer and his victims.

Hexaflexagons!

 From the Daily Post: You have three hundred words to justify the existence of your favorite person, place, or thing. Failure to convince will result in it vanishing without a trace. Go!

For anybody who hasn’t seen any of youtuber Vihart’s videos before, she recently created a series of interesting videos about hexaflexagons; essentially a thin strip of paper folded into a hexagon by first folding it into a line of equilateral triangles, then following the folds in the triangles to make a hexagon.

 

So what? Well, they’re not just any old hexagon, you can turn them inside out (or flexing) to find different sides, and doing this in a certain way means you disocver new sides. Logic would tell you that it would have two sides, but you can make ones with 3 or even 6 sides.

 

This feature is why they should exist – they’re a fun way of teaching maths to children because it’s visual and interactive – you can see for yourself the effects of maths in real-time in your hands, instead of on a whiteboard or screen.

 

Even more useful is their unusual property, with the six sided hexaflexagon, of having the same sides in different states – to understand better what I mean by this video. This allows children to be introduced to diagrams, in this case a Feynman diagram, and helps them to develop their lateral thinking.

Still not convinced hexaflexagons are worth saving? They can also be used to help exaplin A2 Chemistry, in particular the topic of chirality, because depending on how you twisted the original piece of paper, you get a non-superimposable mirror image hexaflexagon – one way the flaps face clockwise, and in the other they face antoclockwise.

 

Above all, they are fun and can be used to improve artistic ability – what you draw on one face will appear different on another so there begins the challenge of a pattern that looks good on all the faces.

You can even make hexaflexagons out of tortillas for a delicious yet mathematical combination!

 

I hope I’ve convinced you that hexaflexagons are worth saving, and don’t forget to cast your vote in the poll below to protect the humble hexaflexagon!