Here is a novel activity that can be used with selected dates---for example, March 27, 1981---which might be introduced to the class in the following way:

"Today is a special day for mathematicians. To see why, let's write the date in the usual brief form, 3/27/81. Notice that we can also state this as a multiplication sentence, 3 × 27 = 81. Interesting, wouldn't you say! Let's call this a * product date*. Are there any more product dates in 1981?"

After students have had time to explore this question and find answers, the following questions can be posed:

- Did last year have any product dates? If so, when?

- Will next year have any product dates? If so, when?

- Did your birthday fall on a product date?

- How many product dates are there in any specific decade, say, the 1970s, the 1960s, and so on. List them.

- The BIG question: How many product dates are there in a
__whole____century__? List them.

From the file of Terrel Trotter, Jr., McKinley Middle School, Harvey, IL 60426 (who found the idea in the *Journal of Recreational Mathematics*, April 1969 and October 1972)

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