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Operation Comics #5: Wonderkid! The Origins of Wonderguy

Bruce Kessler, Western Kentucky University
Tressa Tullis, Western Kentucky University

Abstract

This is the fifth of a series of comics that embed mathematics appropriate for grades 4 through 6 in story told in comic book format. Printed versions of this comic are being used by students at Cumberland Trace Elementary in Bowling Green, KY. The comic is available as an e-book for the Nook at the link provided above. Hard copies of the comic are available at www.operationcomics.com. Supplementary materials are available for free below. For more information on the origin and goals of this comic, see the pre-print of the paper "Comic Books That Teach Mathematics" at http://works.bepress.com/bruce_kessler/8.

In this fifth issue, Wonderguy shares some clues with Claire and Dillon, and his secretary (foreshadowing), about how he came to be so strong. He also tells them about the first crime he ever stopped, as only a very young boy.

In this issue, the mathematical concepts of simple probability and the probability of multiple independent events are discussed. Also, the science topics of genetics and Punnett squares are addressed, and even a bit of physics is discussed.

Suggested Citation

Bruce Kessler and Tressa Tullis. Operation Comics #5: Wonderkid! The Origins of Wonderguy. Bowling Green, KY: WKU Research Foundation, 2011.

operationcomics5_sample.pdf (654 kB)
This is a sample from the fifth comic, showing how some of the science and mathematics are displayed in the story.

teacher_sup_5.pdf (329 kB)
This is a teacher supplement to the fifth comic, outlining the mathematics (and science) in the issue and how it fits with national standards.

Punnett_squares_sup.pdf (153 kB)
This is a first student worksheet where students get to construct their own Punnett squares and calculate probabilities.

two_genes_sup1.pdf (150 kB)
This is a second student worksheet where students get to construct more complicated Punnett squares and determine probabilities.

two_genes_sup2.pdf (157 kB)
This is a third student worksheet where students get to construct more complicated Punnett squares and determine probabilities.