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
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or
DVDs? How about using five, then six?
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.
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?
The challenge for you is to make a string of six (or more!) graded cubes.
In this challenge, you will work in a group to investigate circular
fences enclosing trees that are planted in square or triangular
Here is a version of the game 'Happy Families' for you to make and
Take a counter and surround it by a ring of other counters that
MUST touch two others. How many are needed?
Our 2008 Advent Calendar has a 'Making Maths' activity for every
day in the run-up to Christmas.
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?
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?
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?
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?
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.
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
Make a ball from triangles!
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
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?
These squares have been made from Cuisenaire rods. Can you describe
the pattern? What would the next square look like?
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?
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?
NRICH December 2006 advent calendar - a new tangram for each day in
the run-up to Christmas.
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?
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.
Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an
octagon in a square.
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
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 the child walking home from school?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the lobster, yacht and cyclist?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the chairs?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of Mai Ling and Chi Wing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this shape. How would you describe it?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these people?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this brazier for roasting chestnuts?
Have a go at drawing these stars which use six points drawn around
a circle. Perhaps you can create your own designs?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this telephone?
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?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Fung at the table?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Wai Ping, Wah Ming and Chi Wing?
Make a cube out of straws and have a go at this practical
Make new patterns from simple turning instructions. You can have a go using pencil and paper or with a floor robot.
This is a simple paper-folding activity that gives an intriguing result which you can then investigate further.