A blog about teaching and learning in a maths classroom.
Sunday, 27 September 2009 | 2 Comments
In my IST class, we’re studying Modeling and Simulation, and started to make a model of a dice using Excel.
Thinking about it, the technique involved in making this would also be of interest to Maths teachers.
In Excel, make sure the Analysis Toolpak is installed.
The RANDBETWEEN function will return an integer between the bottom and top numbers everytime the worksheet is recalculated (by pressing F9 on Windows and Command + = on a Mac).
So, for a six sided dice, you’d want this formula in a cell:
=RANDBETWEEN(1,6)
But, we could make this more flexible. For starters, using references to other cells will allow the size of the dice to be changed easily.
A | B | |
---|---|---|
1 | Bottom: | 1 |
2 | Top: | 6 |
3 | Roll: | =RANDBETWEEN |
Making the number look nice is one thing, but a nice touch is to use dots.
A | B | C | D | E | |
---|---|---|---|---|---|
1 | Bottom: | 1 | |||
2 | Top: | 6 | |||
3 | Roll: | 5 | |||
4 | |||||
5 | • | • | |||
6 | • | ||||
7 | • | • |
Formulas:
=IF($B$3<>1,"•","")
=IF($B$3=6,"•","")
=IF($B$3>=4,"•","")
=IF(ISODD($B$3),"•","")
=IF($B$3>=4,"•","")
=IF($B$3>=4,"•","")
=IF($B$3>=2,"•","")
To make the dots appear, you need to set the font for those cells to Wingdings and insert the bullet symbol into the formulas.
Watch it in action:
See my earlier post Dice for a version with these extensions.
Posted in • How to • Software • Excel | Short URL: http://mths.co/1661
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MathsLinksSimon Job — eleventh year of teaching maths in a public high school in Western Sydney, Australia.
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