Marshmallows, Toothpicks, & Triangles


Yesterday was the 100th day of school for this year!  We had several activities planned to make the day exciting.  My students came up with a list of 100 Bible names…they were excited—mostly because each name they contributed earned them a jelly bean. J  I also had slips for them to draw every 100 min. which contained special activities or prizes.

We had a hot lunch with 100 on the pizza burgers and the cupcakes.  While the students ate, they worked on coming up with 100 words made from the letters of “One Hundred Days.”  After lunch they were divided into groups for a contest.  Each group of three or four students had 100 toothpicks and a bag of mini marshmallows.  The challenge was to make the tallest free-standing structure.  Some groups set to work right away and later were seen totally redoing their structure.  Some helplessly looked at the bag of marshmallows.  When the timer buzzed, Mr. Troyer went around and measured the structure or heap—whichever it happened to be.  The winner was around 12 inches.  According to the students, the best part came next. A mini marshmallow fight and toss-and-catch-in-your-mouth practice!


This morning, Mr. Troyer showed me a structure built later in the day.  This structure was still standing and actually kept its shape.  What was the difference?  This structure was almost entire composed of triangles.  Think about bridges and trusses.  There is strength in triangles.  A square will easily fold, but a triangle doesn’t.

I thought about how we often see the Godhead represented as a triangle.  I suppose it largely has to do with the fact that God is a trinity.  But as I pondered this, I thought about the beauty in the comparison.  What strength and support we get from God!  When I try to add myself as the fourth part, things just collapse.  Another one of those subtle lessons from creation that teach us about the greatness of our God!


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