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Aug 31 2015

Complementary numbers and colors

Do numbers and colours have any connections? Seems like they have.

Complementary numbers and colors

Numeral system

Numeral system is just a way of expressing numbers in a consistent manner.

The decimal numeral system 

Most of our children are exposed to this number system in school. The decimal number system that they use every day has 10 digits {0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9} and so it is Base-10. Now  ten is the number which is the count of fingers and thumbs on both hands (or toes on the feet). The Also, the english word digit as well as its translation in many languages is the anatomical term for fingers and toes.

Complementary numbers in a decimal numeral system

The complementary number of 0 is 10

The complementary number of 1 is 9

The complementary number of 2 is 8

The complementary number of 3 is 7

The complementary number of 4 is 6

———————————-of 5 is 5

———————————-of 6 is 4

———————————-of 7 is 3

———————————-of 8 is 2

———————————-of 9 is 1

of course of  ——————of 10 is 0

The any number added to it’s complement is 10. This is when the base is 10.

Binary number system

In their computer class, children might also be exposed to binary number system. Binary digits can only be 0 or 1, so they are Base-2.

What is base?

Now The number that is going to be raised to a power. Example: in 82, 8 is the base

Complementary colours in nature

When I was talking about complementary numbers with Arpita I thought of introducing the colour wheel to her and explain to her, how like numbers there are complementary colours. These complementary colours are all around us in nature. Like the numeral system where numbers are expressed in a consistent manner, colors in nature also abundantly co-exist in complements.

Complementary colours are any two colours which are directly opposite each other in a colour wheel. When complementary colours are mixed together they make grey or black. Because they are opposites, they tend to look especially attractive when used together. Used cleverly visually they become appealing.

To simplistically explain the colour wheel and primary colours to your child show them the following videos. The videos discusses the three pairs of complementary colours in colour theory: blue/orange, violet/yellow and green/red and how complementary colours also exists beautifully in nature.



At this point of our discussion, I thought I could introduced Arpita to the concept of pop art through Andy Warhol and the way he chose colours complementary colours for his paintings and prints. However, this i would reserve for another post. Instead, if it interests, you might want to check out my post on doodling the intricacies of nature at doodle art- Milieu of flowers and leaves . This is purely for fun.




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