Historian Research Report


For the WebQuest Activity

A Creative Encounter of the Numerical Kind


Step 1:  Save this page to your personal network drive (Save As; Drive h; Historian Research Report; OK).  Or, you can save it to your customary data storage location.

Step 2:  Use the “Back” arrow on the browser toolbar to go back to the WebQuest instruction page.

Step 3:  After reopening this page in a separate window, you are ready to type the answers as you visit the Internet sites on the WebQuest.


Visit each of the following Internet sites, which are linked on the Process Page of the WebQuest.


·  African Counting Method, 37,000BC

1.      How did prehistoric African hunters represent the number 29?


2.      What was the number base for the earliest counting method?


3.      Why do you think that people improved the earliest number system?  What was its major drawback?


·  Egyptian Numerals, 3,500BC

4.      How many different symbols did the Ancient Egyptians use in their number system?


5.      Did the Ancient Egyptians have a symbol for 0?


6.      How did the Ancient Egyptians write the number 15?


7.      What is the largest number, which could be written using the Ancient Egyptians’ number symbols?


8.      Did the Ancient Egyptians’ number system use place value?  In other words, did they put symbols into different places to change the value?


·  Babylonian Numbers Chart, 2,000BC (Read the beginning 3 paragraphs and the large number chart only)

9.      What was the number base used by the Babylonians?


10.  How many symbols did the Babylonians use?  


11.  How did the Babylonians write the number 15?


12.  Did the Babylonians use a symbol for 0? 



·  Mayan Number System, 400AD

13.  What was the number base used by the Mayans?


14.  What number symbols did the Mayans use?


15.  How did the Mayans write the number 15?  


15.  Mayans did use place value.  Using your knowledge of place value and number bases, what do you think was the first quantity that the Mayans had to write in a different place?  In other words, when did they have to regroup?



            Our number system evolved from the Arabic culture.  Why do you think our number system survived?  In other words, why is our standard number system better than the others?