Can you make the most extraordinary, the most amazing, the most
unusual patterns/designs from these triangles which are made in a
This practical investigation invites you to make tessellating
shapes in a similar way to the artist Escher.
What is the greatest number of counters you can place on the grid below without four of them lying at the corners of a square?
NRICH December 2006 advent calendar - a new tangram for each day in
the run-up to Christmas.
Arrange 9 red cubes, 9 blue cubes and 9 yellow cubes into a large 3 by 3 cube. No row or column of cubes must contain two cubes of the same colour.
How can you arrange the 5 cubes so that you need the smallest number of Brush Loads of paint to cover them? Try with other numbers of cubes as well.
What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that
you cannot fit another that's the same into it?
Try continuing these patterns made from triangles. Can you create
your own repeating pattern?
This was a problem for our birthday website. Can you use four of these pieces to form a square? How about making a square with all five pieces?
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or
DVDs? How about using five, then six?
If you split the square into these two pieces, it is possible to fit the pieces together again to make a new shape. How many new shapes can you make?
In how many ways can you fit two of these yellow triangles
together? Can you predict the number of ways two blue triangles can
be fitted together?
What are the next three numbers in this sequence? Can you explain
why are they called pyramid numbers?
Using different numbers of sticks, how many different triangles are
you able to make? Can you make any rules about the numbers of
sticks that make the most triangles?
Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these
mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.
This problem focuses on Dienes' Logiblocs. What is the same and
what is different about these pairs of shapes? Can you describe the
shapes in the picture?
Here is a version of the game 'Happy Families' for you to make and
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
Is there a best way to stack cans? What do different supermarkets
do? How high can you safely stack the cans?
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
Take 5 cubes of one colour and 2 of another colour. How many
different ways can you join them if the 5 must touch the table and
the 2 must not touch the table?
Take a rectangle of paper and fold it in half, and half again, to
make four smaller rectangles. How many different ways can you fold
Our 2008 Advent Calendar has a 'Making Maths' activity for every
day in the run-up to Christmas.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this plaque design?
Can you split each of the shapes below in half so that the two parts are exactly the same?
This problem invites you to build 3D shapes using two different
triangles. Can you make the shapes from the pictures?
Can you put these shapes in order of size? Start with the smallest.
Let's say you can only use two different lengths - 2 units and 4
units. Using just these 2 lengths as the edges how many different
cuboids can you make?
Make a chair and table out of interlocking cubes, making sure that the chair fits under the table!
Paint a stripe on a cardboard roll. Can you predict what will
happen when it is rolled across a sheet of paper?
The ancient Egyptians were said to make right-angled triangles
using a rope with twelve equal sections divided by knots. What
other triangles could you make if you had a rope like this?
In this town, houses are built with one room for each person. There
are some families of seven people living in the town. In how many
different ways can they build their houses?
These pictures show squares split into halves. Can you find other ways?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this goat and giraffe?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of Mai Ling and Chi Wing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming playing the board game?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Fung at the table?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this brazier for roasting chestnuts?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this telephone?
The Man is much smaller than us. Can you use the picture of him
next to a mug to estimate his height and how much tea he drinks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Wai Ping, Wah Ming and Chi Wing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
What happens to the area of a square if you double the length of
the sides? Try the same thing with rectangles, diamonds and other
shapes. How do the four smaller ones fit into the larger one?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these people?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the workmen?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these rabbits?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the candle and sundial?