Baked Bean Cans

Is there a best way to stack cans? What do different supermarkets do? How high can you safely stack the cans?

Homes

There are to be 6 homes built on a new development site. They could be semi-detached, detached or terraced houses. How many different combinations of these can you find?

Cubes

Investigate the number of faces you can see when you arrange three cubes in different ways.

So It's 28

So It's 28

I've just found that I keep coming across the number $28$.
Next Year's calendar for February:

then there's my set of $28$ dominoes:

So, why don't you explore this number? Find $28$ flat shapes the same and put them together in some way.

Here are some I found using circular discs, octagons, hexagons, triangles and pentagons.

You may like to try $28$ cubes and get something like this:
or put together to make a caterpillar with changes at the ends.
Let us know what you come up with and what you notice.

Why do this problem?

This activity is good for allowing pupils to explore both shapes and number, or to choose a particular aspect to focus on. There is a lot of freedom involved and there are exciting things to find out. Learners will be able to take control of their own learning and choose their own direction in this task.

Possible approach

You could begin by showing some of the pictures in the problem on the screen for the pupils to see and talk about. What similarities do they notice? What differences? They may pick up on the fact that the common link is the number $28$ straight away, but if not you can ask questions to probe them further. If some would like more examples they can be foundĀ here.

You can then set the group off on their own ideas using the number $28$. Pupils should be encouraged to ask themselves questions like " I wonder what would happen if I ...?", making a small change and exploring further.

Key questions

Tell me about what you've got here.