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
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.
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or
DVDs? How about using five, then six?
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?
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.
NRICH December 2006 advent calendar - a new tangram for each day in
the run-up to Christmas.
Take a counter and surround it by a ring of other counters that
MUST touch two others. How many are needed?
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?
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?
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
Make a ball from triangles!
Here is a version of the game 'Happy Families' for you to make and
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
What is the largest number of circles we can fit into the frame
without them overlapping? How do you know? What will happen if you
try the other shapes?
Can you create more models that follow these rules?
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
In this challenge, you will work in a group to investigate circular
fences enclosing trees that are planted in square or triangular
The challenge for you is to make a string of six (or more!) graded
Where can you put the mirror across the square so that you can still "see" the whole square? How many different positions are possible?
How can you put five cereal packets together to make different
shapes if you must put them face-to-face?
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?
Our 2008 Advent Calendar has a 'Making Maths' activity for every
day in the run-up to Christmas.
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?
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?
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?
We went to the cinema and decided to buy some bags of popcorn so we
asked about the prices. Investigate how much popcorn each bag holds
so find out which we might have bought.
These squares have been made from Cuisenaire rods. Can you describe
the pattern? What would the next square look like?
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.
Looking at the picture of this Jomista Mat, can you decribe what
you see? Why not try and make one yourself?
This practical problem challenges you to create shapes and patterns
with two different types of triangle. You could even try
Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an
octagon in a square.
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.
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or
Can you predict when you'll be clapping and when you'll be clicking
if you start this rhythm? How about when a friend begins a new
rhythm at the same time?
Ideas for practical ways of representing data such as Venn and
Can you recreate this Indian screen pattern? Can you make up
similar patterns of your own?
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 Little Fung at the table?
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 outline of the child walking home from school?
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 this telephone?
Use the lines on this figure to show how the square can be divided into 2 halves, 3 thirds, 6 sixths and 9 ninths.
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?