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Formula Questions - complicated random numbers

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The formula question example shows how to ask students ridiculously easy questions like "What is [x] + 5?"

Or "Calculate the weight of [x] blue whales."

For those of us who don't teach elementary school, this is not useful.

I want give my students a random number between, say 100,000 and 250,000. And I do NOT want a random number of 197,476. I want to generate [x] between 1 and 10, with 1 decimal place, and then multiply that times 15,000, and add the product to 100,000, to get numbers like 241,500, not 197,476.

Why on earth am I not allowed to do something like the following.

Annual sales are [x*15000+100000]?

2 Solutions
Community Explorer

James –

Thanks for sharing your blog post. It’s a heavy lift, but it’s nice to know that it can be done.

What I ended up doing is creating 5 versions of each problem to be randomly assigned.

And thanks for that tip about generating multiples of 100 by padding the random number with 0’s. I did not know that was possible. I had tried to play around with different attempts like that, but I was just shooting the dark and didn’t have the syntax right.

That tip alone is going to be useful in writing homework problems.



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Community Novice

I have just made a chrome extension that does exactly what you need and then some. You can get it here:

Turn on "Extended" and add these to your formulas:

  • x = range(1, 10, 0.1)
  • a = x*150000 + 100000
  • ... continue with whatever formula you need
  • last formula is the answer

The extension page has my email. Email me if you have any questions!

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