Magic Square Puzzle Maker for Teachers
Recently I was visiting with an old friend, Louise, okay, she’s not old, nor am I, but that’s neither important nor relevant to this story. Anyway, I was visiting with Louise, and we got to talking about ideas for apps (I was looking for ideas for a smart phone app that could be monetized, by the way, I’m still looking for ideas on that subject, but I digress…).
Anyway, Louise started telling me about an app that she wanted built for making quizzes for her high school chemistry classes. It was based on magic squares, and basically, she wanted to provide a list of terms and definitions to the app, and it would then proceed to generate N variations of jumbled definitions and different magic squares based on the one set of terms. The basic idea here is that it would make it inconvenient for students to directly copy answers, since there are many variations of the squares and the order of terms and definitions. Instead, they would have to discuss the terms and definitions, e.g. “who was the scientist who discovered the electron?”, in effect, they would be tricked into studying…
I was intrigued, and momentarily distracted by a bee (sorry, once again not relevant)… So, I agreed to look into building such an app, and once I finished, it seemed as though it was useful enough that I decided to share it with others. So, I am hosting it here on my website, and you’re free to use it as you see fit. I do hope you find it useful, and I’m certainly open to any comments you have on the subject (or other irrelevant subjects such as bees or age), so long as they are constructive. 🙂
P.S. Many thanks to Stephen Lowrie for providing support for building the algorithms used for generating the magic squares. Someday, I should probably look at using the code he wrote for generating even numbered magic squares, as that would be a nice addition to the app.