October 21, 2010


Thirty days hath September,
April June and November.
February has twenty-eight alone,
All the rest have thirty - one,
Excepting Leap Year - that's the time
When February's days are twenty - nine. 
Did anyone share or teach this poem to you when you were starting to memorize the exact number of days for every month of the year?

I guess it's effective when you create a jingle from it - using a common song you easily remember. Otherwise, memorize the poem as is.

I still remember during my elementary days when some items in our periodical examination involve the number of days of specified months. One of my classmates tried to recite (murmur) the poem repeatedly. Unfortunately, he forgot the exact arrangement of the months in the poem. He ended up guessing the answers for the items.

Luckily, a week before the examination, one of my relatives shared a technique of easily remembering the number of days of every month without even memorizing the poem. It helped me a lot remembering the exact number of days. Raymond Blum, the author of the book Mathamusement, called this as the knuckles method. It is called knuckles method because it uses the knuckles and the spaces between the fingers as representations of each month of the year.

Make two fists, with palm down. From left to right, the knuckle formed at the base of your baby finger represents January. The space between the baby finger and the ring finger represents February. The knuckle at the base of your ring finger represents March. Continue the process until you reach December. Take note that when you reach July (represented by the knuckle of the index finger of your left hand), proceed with the knuckle of the index finger of your right hand, which represents August.

The months represented by the knuckles have 31 days. These are January, March, May, July, August, October, December.

The months represented by the spaces between the knuckles have 30 days, except for February. These months are April, June, September and November. February is exempted because during a common year it has 28 days but during a leap year it has 29 days. This happens only every four (4) years.Year 2008 is a leap year. The next one will be on 2012.

The next time someone asks you about the exact number of days of every month, use your knuckles!  



Post a Comment

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

$(function() { function highlight(){ $('.user.blog-author').closest('.comment-block') .css('border', '1px solid #0000FF') .css('background','FCFEA5 url("http://www.blogblog.com/1kt/transparent/white80.png")') .css('color', '#444444') .css('font-size', '12px') .css('padding', '10px'); } $(document).bind('ready scroll click', highlight); });