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The Lions of Little Rock

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Risa Lewis

on 2 April 2014

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Transcript of The Lions of Little Rock

The Lions of Little Rock
Marlee is a 12 year old girl living in Little Rock, Arkansas, who loves math. Math seems to love her back.
Thrown between two opposing ways of life in the struggle for integration in schools
Method to cope, as she does not talk much
A method of order and efficiency
Counts prime numbers to calm down
"There are twenty-five of [prime numbers] under a hundred, and reciting them sure does help me when I'm nervous" (Levine 2).
steadiness of counting and focus required
improves thinking ability for solving problems
A math oriented mind also leads to...
observant way of thinking that pays attention to detail
allows Marlee to notice more opportunities and solutions
Marlee gets stuck in the car trunk of Red, a young and rebellious segregationist
she has no idea where she is so her brother can pick her up. But then, Marlee starts think back to the car ride...

Listen to the description of the car ride carefully and see if you can figure out a solution to Liz's problem. Liz is only 12 years old and under pressure because she just broke into a house to use the phone, but math might be her only way out. (page 243)
Simplifying the Equation
uses math in her life as a set of rules to live by when trying to save her friendship and her education.
Advice from Marlee's math teacher Mr. Harding:

"'the world isn't an addition problem...We tell kids that sometimes. We pretend the world is straightforward, simple, easy...but the truth is, the world is much more like an algebraic equation. With variables and changes, complicated and messy. Sometimes there's more than one answer, and sometimes there is none. Sometimes we don't even know how to solve the problem'"(Levine 269-270).
How to solve for x in real life situations
Thesis
Throughout
The Lions of Little Rock
by Kristin Levine,
the author uses the aspects of math to demonstrate how a thoughtful and focused perspective can be the most important input when solving problems .
observant way of thinking that pays attention to detail
allows Marlee to notice more opportunities and solutions
when Marlee gets stuck in the car trunk of a young and rebellious segregationist, she has no idea where she is so her brother can pick her up. But then, Marlee starts think back to the car ride...
Listen to the description of the car ride carefully and see if you can figure out a solution to Liz's problem. Liz is only 12 years old and under pressure because she just broke into a house to use the phone, but math might be her only way out. (page 243)
Marlee is able to quickly figure out her location, and she tells Liz:
'"Start at the zoo. We went left, then right, then straight for a long time.' Thank goodness I'd paid attention. 'And finally another right.' ...I had an idea. I picked up a piece of mail and rummaged in my purse for a pen. It was three fifteen P.M. when Red drove off. I knew that because I'd heard the church bells. And it was three forty-five when we arrived. So that was thirty minutes. Red had said the car only went twenty-five miles per hour, and he was late, so he'd probably been driving that fast the whole way. I made a few notes on the piece of paper. Thirty minutes was half of one hour, and half of 25 miles was 12.5. God bless math. '
I'm about twelve miles down the road
,' I said.
A math-oriented mind also leads to:
Marlee is able to quickly figure out her location, and she tells Liz:
'"Start at the zoo. We went left, then right, then straight for a long time.' Thank goodness I'd paid attention. 'And finally another right.' ...I had an idea. I picked up a piece of mail and rummaged in my purse for a pen. It was three fifteen P.M. when Red drove off. I knew that because I'd heard the church bells. And it was three forty-five when we arrived. So that was thirty minutes. Red had said the car only went twenty-five miles per hour, and he was late, so he'd probably been driving that fast the whole way. I made a few notes on the piece of paper. Thirty minutes was half of one hour, and half of 25 miles was 12.5. God bless math. '
I'm about twelve miles down the road,
' I said" (Levine 248).
"
factor the equation
"
simplifying the problem into smaller steps
knows she can't integrate schools right now, so she focuses on a more addressable problem.
"Red. He was only one part of the equation, but he was a large part. If I could deal with him, maybe it would help, at least a little" (Levine 272).
brings her friend Liz back by confronting Red, the segregationist that tried to kill her.
Marlee takes the thoughtful approach again when she:
motivates the WEC, or the women's emergency committee to open our schools
overcome their doubts and push forward with a simple calculation to get over a small bump in the voting campaign plan to open the schools
Marlee speaks up:
"'Thirty thousand names sounds like a lot...but if you divide it up between thirty people, that's only a thousand names each. If you figure it takes a minute per card, that's a thousand minutes, or about seventeen hours. That's not forever. It's one long weekend'" (Levine 233-234).
Overall, the use of mathematics in The Lions
of Little Rock exemplifies how employing a more
reserved and analytical way of thinking can
be the driving force in solving today's problems.
The "Little Rock Nine" were the nine students integrated into Little Rock Central High School in 1957 (Little).
Governor Orval Faubus ordered the Arkansas National Guard to stop the students from entering the school, even though he had a federal court order demanding he do so (Little).
The students were prevented from attending for 21 days until on September 25th Eisenhower called the 1,200 members of the U.S. Army's 101th Airborne division, the "Screaming Eagles"(Little).
Elizabeth Eckford denied entrance
National
Guardsman
Ernest Green is Central's first African American graduate (Little).
"It's been an interesting year. I've had a course in human relations first hand" (Little).
The Lion's of Little Rock: time period as a setting of extremes for problem solving.
Levine, Kristin, and Annie Beth Ericsson. The Lions of Little Rock. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2012. Print.
"Little Rock Nine - Encyclopedia of Arkansas." Little Rock Nine - Encyclopedia of Arkansas. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2014.
Works Cited
Full transcript