Here's a quick way to square numbers between 40 and 60. You know the squares of 40, 50, and 60, right?
So let's show what to do for N=51 through 59. Write
N as (50+R) for R between 1 and 9.
Then N^{2} will have first two digits (25+R) and last two digits R^{2}. Thus:
52^{2}= 2704,
58^{2}= 3364,
since 27=25+2 and 33=25+8.
The rule for N=41 through 49 is similar. Write N as (40+R) for R between 1 and 9.
Then N^{2} will have first two digits (15+R) and last two digits (10R)^{2}.
So:
42^{2}= 1764.
48^{2}= 2304.
Presentation Suggestions:
This Fun Fact goes nicely with other lightning arithmetic tricks, such as
Squaring Quickly and
Squares Ending in 5.
The reference gives many more secrets of mental math.
The Math Behind the Fact:
These "rules" are easy to check by noting, for example, that
(50+R)^{2} = 2500+100*R+R^{2}.
And since (40+R)^{2} = (50  (10R) )^{2}, we have
(50  (10R) )^{2}
= 2500 100*(10R)+(10R)^{2}
= 1500 +100*R+(10R)^{2}.
How to Cite this Page:
Su, Francis E., et al. "Squaring Numbers between 40 and 60."
Math Fun Facts.
<http://www.math.hmc.edu/funfacts>.
