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. . . .
Make an equilateral triangle by folding paper and use it to make
patterns of your own.
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 a spiral mobile.
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
A game to make and play based on the number line.
Follow these instructions to make a three-piece and/or seven-piece
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
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?
This package contains hands-on code breaking activities based on
the Enigma Schools Project. Suitable for Stages 2, 3 and 4.
Make some celtic knot patterns using tiling techniques
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
This article for students gives some instructions about how to make some different braids.
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
This article for pupils gives an introduction to Celtic knotwork
patterns and a feel for how you can draw them.
How is it possible to predict the card?
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.
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?
How can you make an angle of 60 degrees by folding a sheet of paper
Use the tangram pieces to make our pictures, or to design some of
How can you make a curve from straight strips of paper?
Make a ball from triangles!
Did you know mazes tell stories? Find out more about mazes and make
one of your own.
A game in which players take it in turns to choose a number. Can you block your opponent?
Make a mobius band and investigate its properties.
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.
Surprise your friends with this magic square trick.
I start with a red, a green and a blue marble. I can trade any of my marbles for two others, one of each colour. Can I end up with five more blue marbles than red after a number of such trades?
How many differently shaped rectangles can you build using these
equilateral and isosceles triangles? Can you make a square?
Can you order pictures of the development of a frog from frogspawn
and of a bean seed growing into a plant?
I start with a red, a blue, a green and a yellow marble. I can
trade any of my marbles for three others, one of each colour. Can I
end up with exactly two marbles of each colour?
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.
Using these kite and dart templates, you could try to recreate part
of Penrose's famous tessellation or design one yourself.
This part introduces the use of Logo for number work. Learn how to use Logo to generate sequences of numbers.
This practical activity involves measuring length/distance.
This is the second in a twelve part introduction to Logo for beginners. In this part you learn to draw polygons.
It's hard to make a snowflake with six perfect lines of symmetry,
but it's fun to try!
Learn how to draw circles using Logo. Wait a minute! Are they really circles? If not what are they?
Learn to write procedures and build them into Logo programs. Learn to use variables.
Can you puzzle out what sequences these Logo programs will give? Then write your own Logo programs to generate sequences.
Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an
octagon in a square.
A description of how to make the five Platonic solids out of paper.
Ideas for practical ways of representing data such as Venn and
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?
Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these
mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.
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.
What shapes can you make by folding an A4 piece of paper?