Mathalicious: Fall of Javert

At the end of the popular musical Les Misérables, Inspector Javert falls from a bridge in the middle of Paris into the river below.

As he falls, he sings…and sings…and sings.

In this lesson, students use quadratic functions to explore the mathematics of how objects fall. How high was Javert’s bridge, how fast was he traveling when he hit the water, and what’s the maximum height from which someone can safely jump?


Algebra & Pre-Algebra, Quadratic Equations
High School

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