Galileo, a famous inventor who lived about 400 years ago, came up with an idea similar to this for making a time measuring instrument. Can you turn your pendulum into an accurate minute timer?
In this article for teachers, Bernard uses some problems to suggest that once a numerical pattern has been spotted from a practical starting point, going back to the practical can help explain. . . .
This practical activity involves measuring length/distance.
Can you order pictures of the development of a frog from frogspawn and of a bean seed growing into a plant?
A game to make and play based on the number line.
Make a spiral mobile.
These are pictures of the sea defences at New Brighton. Can you work out what a basic shape might be in both images of the sea wall and work out a way they might fit together?
Follow these instructions to make a three-piece and/or seven-piece tangram.
You will need a long strip of paper for this task. Cut it into different lengths. How could you find out how long each piece is?
Using these kite and dart templates, you could try to recreate part of Penrose's famous tessellation or design one yourself.
Make a ball from triangles!
Have a go at drawing these stars which use six points drawn around a circle. Perhaps you can create your own designs?
Use the tangram pieces to make our pictures, or to design some of your own!
Make an equilateral triangle by folding paper and use it to make patterns of your own.
Make a cube with three strips of paper. Colour three faces or use the numbers 1 to 6 to make a die.
How can you make a curve from straight strips of paper?
Make a mobius band and investigate its properties.
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both sides once you've made the pieces?
You could use just coloured pencils and paper to create this design, but it will be more eye-catching if you can get hold of hammer, nails and string.
This article for pupils gives an introduction to Celtic knotwork patterns and a feel for how you can draw them.
Did you know mazes tell stories? Find out more about mazes and make one of your own.
Surprise your friends with this magic square trick.
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
Have you noticed that triangles are used in manmade structures? Perhaps there is a good reason for this? 'Test a Triangle' and see how rigid triangles are.
It might seem impossible but it is possible. How can you cut a playing card to make a hole big enough to walk through?
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
Can you put these shapes in order of size? Start with the smallest.
What do these two triangles have in common? How are they related?
Exploring balance and centres of mass can be great fun. The resulting structures can seem impossible. Here are some images to encourage you to experiment with non-breakable objects of your own.
Paint a stripe on a cardboard roll. Can you predict what will happen when it is rolled across a sheet of paper?
Can you cut up a square in the way shown and make the pieces into a triangle?
Learn how to draw circles using Logo. Wait a minute! Are they really circles? If not what are they?
Make some celtic knot patterns using tiling techniques
Follow these instructions to make a five-pointed snowflake from a square of paper.
These models have appeared around the Centre for Mathematical Sciences. Perhaps you would like to try to make some similar models of your own.
It's hard to make a snowflake with six perfect lines of symmetry, but it's fun to try!
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.
Which of the following cubes can be made from these nets?
Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an octagon in a square.
What shape and size of drinks mat is best for flipping and catching?
A description of how to make the five Platonic solids out of paper.
Ideas for practical ways of representing data such as Venn and Carroll diagrams.
This article for students gives some instructions about how to make some different braids.
Have a look at what happens when you pull a reef knot and a granny knot tight. Which do you think is best for securing things together? Why?
What shapes can you make by folding an A4 piece of paper?
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or ruling lines.
Kaia is sure that her father has worn a particular tie twice a week in at least five of the last ten weeks, but her father disagrees. Who do you think is right?
Here are some ideas to try in the classroom for using counters to investigate number patterns.
This is the second in a twelve part introduction to Logo for beginners. In this part you learn to draw polygons.
Learn about Pen Up and Pen Down in Logo