The spines of a stack of vintage comic books, laying in a horizontal stack.

Comic Book Algebra

How can we as comic book designers build superhero worlds that teach others about math?

Project Summary

Although the worlds of comic book superheroes are fantastical, they are also filled with complex mathematical problems to solve, such as “How many aliens will have come through the portal before Shuri manages to close it?” “How many people can Iron Man rescue before the building explodes?” 

In this project, students are challenged by a comic book publisher to create an engaging and mathematically meaningful comic book that will teach others about algebraic reasoning and mathematical modeling. Students explore the imaginary world(s) of superheroes in order to generate problems that their favorite characters might face. They model these problems using algebraic expressions or equations and use these ideas to create their own algebra comic books. Throughout the project, students will reflect on the ways in which the problems they create in their comic books mirror real-life situations.