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. . . .
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.
Make a clinometer and use it to help you estimate the heights of
It might seem impossible but it is possible. How can you cut a
playing card to make a hole big enough to walk through?
Make some celtic knot patterns using tiling techniques
This article for students gives some instructions about how to make some different braids.
This article for pupils gives an introduction to Celtic knotwork
patterns and a feel for how you can draw them.
Make a spiral mobile.
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.
This package contains hands-on code breaking activities based on
the Enigma Schools Project. Suitable for Stages 2, 3 and 4.
Use the tangram pieces to make our pictures, or to design some of
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Follow these instructions to make a three-piece and/or seven-piece
Logo helps us to understand gradients of lines and why Muggles Magic is not magic but mathematics. See the problem Muggles magic.
Can you order pictures of the development of a frog from frogspawn
and of a bean seed growing into a plant?
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
A game to make and play based on the number line.
Make an equilateral triangle by folding paper and use it to make
patterns of your own.
Make a ball from triangles!
Make a cube with three strips of paper. Colour three faces or use
the numbers 1 to 6 to make a die.
Time for a little mathemagic! Choose any five cards from a pack and show four of them to your partner. How can they work out the fifth?
Have a go at drawing these stars which use six points drawn around
a circle. Perhaps you can create your own designs?
Ideas for practical ways of representing data such as Venn and
Make a mobius band and investigate its properties.
Did you know mazes tell stories? Find out more about mazes and make
one of your own.
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.
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
Surprise your friends with this magic square trick.
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.
Using these kite and dart templates, you could try to recreate part
of Penrose's famous tessellation or design one yourself.
How is it possible to predict the card?
As part of Liverpool08 European Capital of Culture there were a
huge number of events and displays. One of the art installations
was called "Turning the Place Over". Can you find our how it works?
How can you make a curve from straight strips of paper?
How many differently shaped rectangles can you build using these
equilateral and isosceles triangles? Can you make a square?
These models have appeared around the Centre for Mathematical Sciences. Perhaps you would like to try to make some similar models of your own.
Generate three random numbers to determine the side lengths of a triangle. What triangles can you draw?
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?
Can you make the most extraordinary, the most amazing, the most
unusual patterns/designs from these triangles which are made in a
Starting with four different triangles, imagine you have an
unlimited number of each type. How many different tetrahedra can
you make? Convince us you have found them all.
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
This is a simple paper-folding activity that gives an intriguing result which you can then investigate further.
Move your counters through this snake of cards and see how far you
can go. Are you surprised by where you end up?
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
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?
Design and construct a prototype intercooler which will satisfy agreed quality control constraints.
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
The triangle ABC is equilateral. The arc AB has centre C, the arc
BC has centre A and the arc CA has centre B. Explain how and why
this shape can roll along between two parallel tracks.
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?
This practical activity involves measuring length/distance.
A description of how to make the five Platonic solids out of paper.