Marble Puzzle

Part of Exhibition: Mind Benders

Topic: Physical Sciences Subtopic: Motion & Forces

Case Study

of an Exhibit

by Kathy Krafft

Published on April 24, 2007, Modified on August 05, 2009

  • Description and goals

    A puzzle you can make for just a few bucks. Start with the two marbles down. Can you get them both up?

    We put together an in-house exhibition with about 20 different table-top puzzles. We were unsure if visitors would be frustrated by not being able to solve all of the puzzles, but it was a big hit; very few asked to see the answers. Some of the puzzles were more along the lines of tiling, so there wasn’t one solution.

    We still rotate some of them onto the museum floor; adults particularly enjoy them while their kids spend long times at some of their favorite exhibits.

    HINT: this does not involve fussing and balancing the exhibit. There is an elegant solution you can figure out without having the puzzle in hand.

    There are a couple of great puzzle books we found at our public library. “Creative Puzzles of the World” is one good one.

  • Exhibit Opened: 1997

  • Location: Ithaca, NY, United States

  • Estimated Cost: Less than $5,000 (US)

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