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Practical Activity. Team-building. Group worthy. Solids. Questioning. Shape, space & measures - generally. Real world. Problem solving.

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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Practical Activity

It's a Fence!

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

In this challenge, you will work in a group to investigate circular fences enclosing trees that are planted in square or triangular arrangements.

Well Balanced

Stage: 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

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.

Plaited Origami Polyhedra

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

These models have appeared around the Centre for Mathematical Sciences. Perhaps you would like to try to make some similar models of your own.

How Many?

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

This project challenges you to work out the number of cubes hidden under a cloth. What questions would you like to ask?

Thirsty?

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Can you lay out the pictures of the drinks in the way described by the clue cards?

Making Maths: Archimedes' Spiral

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Make a spiral mobile.

Making Maths: Walking Through a Playing Card?

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

It might seem impossible but it is possible. How can you cut a playing card to make a hole big enough to walk through?

Making Maths: String and Circles

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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.

Enigma

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

This package contains hands-on code breaking activities based on the Enigma Schools Project. Suitable for Stages 2, 3 and 4.

Making Maths: A-maze-ing

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Did you know mazes tell stories? Find out more about mazes and make one of your own.

Making Maths: Make a Pendulum

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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?

Making Maths: Celtic Knot Tiles

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Make some celtic knot patterns using tiling techniques

Making Maths: Equilateral Triangle Folding

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Make an equilateral triangle by folding paper and use it to make patterns of your own.

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

What shape and size of drinks mat is best for flipping and catching?

Celtic Knotwork Patterns

Stage: 2 and 3

This article for pupils gives an introduction to Celtic knotwork patterns and a feel for how you can draw them.

Observing the Sun and the Moon

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

How does the time of dawn and dusk vary? What about the Moon, how does that change from night to night? Is the Sun always the same? Gather data to help you explore these questions.

Plaiting and Braiding

Stage: 2 and 3

This article for students gives some instructions about how to make some different braids.

Two by One

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.

How Tall?

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?

Shaping Up

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Are all the possible combinations of two shapes included in this set of 27 cards? How do you know?

Making Maths: Birds from an Egg

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?

Making Tangrams

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or ruling lines.

Seven Flipped

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.

Hoops/rope

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Ideas for practical ways of representing data such as Venn and Carroll diagrams.

Sponge Sections

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

You have been given three shapes made out of sponge: a sphere, a cylinder and a cone. Your challenge is to find out how to cut them to make different shapes for printing.

First Forward Into Logo 5: Pen Up, Pen Down

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Learn about Pen Up and Pen Down in Logo

Construct-o-straws

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Make a cube out of straws and have a go at this practical challenge.

Rearrange the Square

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

We can cut a small triangle off the corner of a square and then fit the two pieces together. Can you work out how these shapes are made from the two pieces?

Tricky Triangles

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Use the three triangles to fill these outline shapes. Perhaps you can create some of your own shapes for a friend to fill?

Sports Equipment

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

If these balls are put on a line with each ball touching the one in front and the one behind, which arrangement makes the shortest line of balls?

Fractional Triangles

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Use the lines on this figure to show how the square can be divided into 2 halves, 3 thirds, 6 sixths and 9 ninths.

Data Shapes

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Sara and Will were sorting some pictures of shapes on cards. "I'll collect the circles," said Sara. "I'll take the red ones," answered Will. Can you see any cards they would both want?

Let's Reflect

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Where can you put the mirror across the square so that you can still "see" the whole square? How many different positions are possible?

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

NRICH December 2006 advent calendar - a new tangram for each day in the run-up to Christmas.

Animated Triangles

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Watch this "Notes on a Triangle" film. Can you recreate parts of the film using cut-out triangles?

Triangle Shapes

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

This practical problem challenges you to create shapes and patterns with two different types of triangle. You could even try overlapping them.

Jomista Mat

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Looking at the picture of this Jomista Mat, can you decribe what you see? Why not try and make one yourself?

Making Cuboids

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

Making Maths: Indian Window Screen

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you recreate this Indian screen pattern? Can you make up similar patterns of your own?

Two Squared

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

World of Tan 6 - Junk

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?

World of Tan 4 - Monday Morning

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Wai Ping, Wah Ming and Chi Wing?

Masterclasses Information

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

If you'd like to know more about Primary Maths Masterclasses, this is the package to read! Find out about current groups in your region or how to set up your own.

Paper Folding - Models of the Platonic Solids

Stage: 2, 3 and 4

A description of how to make the five Platonic solids out of paper.

Making Sticks

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Kimie and Sebastian were making sticks from interlocking cubes and lining them up. Can they make their lines the same length? Can they make any other lines?

Cutting Corners

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you make the most extraordinary, the most amazing, the most unusual patterns/designs from these triangles which are made in a special way?

First Forward Into Logo 3: Repeat REPEAT

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

More Logo for beginners. Now learn more about the REPEAT command.

Star Find

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Can you see which tile is the odd one out in this design? Using the basic tile, can you make a repeating pattern to decorate our wall?

It's a Tie

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

A Patchwork Piece

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an octagon in a square.