An aluminium can contains 330 ml of cola. If the can's diameter is
6 cm what is the can's height?
A plastic funnel is used to pour liquids through narrow apertures.
What shape funnel would use the least amount of plastic to
manufacture for any specific volume ?
Substitute -1, -2 or -3, into an algebraic expression and you'll
get three results. Is it possible to tell in advance which of those
three will be the largest ?
It is known that the area of the largest equilateral triangular
section of a cube is 140sq cm. What is the side length of the cube?
The distances between the centres of two adjacent faces of. . . .
Some people offer advice on how to win at games of chance, or how
to influence probability in your favour. Can you decide whether
advice is good or not?
A hexagon, with sides alternately a and b units in length, is
inscribed in a circle. How big is the radius of the circle?
Why does this fold create an angle of sixty degrees?
What is the greatest volume you can get for a rectangular (cuboid)
parcel if the maximum combined length and girth are 2 metres?
What is the largest number which, when divided into 1905, 2587,
3951, 7020 and 8725 in turn, leaves the same remainder each time?
Here's a chance to work with large numbers...
What does this number mean ? Which order of 1, 2, 3 and 4 makes the
highest value ? Which makes the lowest ?
Find a cuboid (with edges of integer values) that has a surface
area of exactly 100 square units. Is there more than one? Can you
find them all?
Which of these games would you play to give yourself the best possible chance of winning a prize?
The diagram illustrates the formula: 1 + 3 + 5 + ... + (2n - 1) = n² Use the diagram to show that any odd number is the difference of two squares.
Your school has been left a million pounds in the will of an ex-
pupil. What model of investment and spending would you use in order
to ensure the best return on the money?
If a sum invested gains 10% each year how long before it has
doubled its value?
Take any four digit number. Move the first digit to the 'back of
the queue' and move the rest along. Now add your two numbers. What
properties do your answers always have?
Two ladders are propped up against facing walls. The end of the
first ladder is 10 metres above the foot of the first wall. The end
of the second ladder is 5 metres above the foot of the second. . . .
Which has the greatest area, a circle or a square inscribed in an
isosceles, right angle triangle?
A napkin is folded so that a corner coincides with the midpoint of
an opposite edge . Investigate the three triangles formed .
A square of area 40 square cms is inscribed in a semicircle. Find
the area of the square that could be inscribed in a circle of the
How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of
11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?
A 1 metre cube has one face on the ground and one face against a
wall. A 4 metre ladder leans against the wall and just touches the
cube. How high is the top of the ladder above the ground?
There are lots of different methods to find out what the shapes are worth - how many can you find?
Water freezes at 0°Celsius (32°Fahrenheit) and boils at
100°C (212°Fahrenheit). Is there a temperature at which
Celsius and Fahrenheit readings are the same?
A spider is sitting in the middle of one of the smallest walls in a
room and a fly is resting beside the window. What is the shortest
distance the spider would have to crawl to catch the fly?
Investigate how you can work out what day of the week your birthday
will be on next year, and the year after...
Mathematicians are always looking for efficient methods for solving problems. How efficient can you be?
Play the divisibility game to create numbers in which the first two digits make a number divisible by 2, the first three digits make a number divisible by 3...
What is the smallest number with exactly 14 divisors?
Ben passed a third of his counters to Jack, Jack passed a quarter
of his counters to Emma and Emma passed a fifth of her counters to
Ben. After this they all had the same number of counters.
Caroline and James pick sets of five numbers. Charlie chooses three of them that add together to make a multiple of three. Can they stop him?
Can you guarantee that, for any three numbers you choose, the
product of their differences will always be an even number?
What size square corners should be cut from a square piece of paper to make a box with the largest possible volume?
Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.
The clues for this Sudoku are the product of the numbers in adjacent squares.
Find the decimal equivalents of the fractions one ninth, one ninety
ninth, one nine hundred and ninety ninth etc. Explain the pattern
you get and generalise.
Do you know a quick way to check if a number is a multiple of two?
How about three, four or six?
The number 2.525252525252.... can be written as a fraction. What is
the sum of the denominator and numerator?
Start with two numbers. This is the start of a sequence. The next
number is the average of the last two numbers. Continue the
sequence. What will happen if you carry on for ever?
Chris and Jo put two red and four blue ribbons in a box. They each
pick a ribbon from the box without looking. Jo wins if the two
ribbons are the same colour. Is the game fair?
Some 4 digit numbers can be written as the product of a 3 digit
number and a 2 digit number using the digits 1 to 9 each once and
only once. The number 4396 can be written as just such a product.
Can. . . .
Imagine a large cube made from small red cubes being dropped into a
pot of yellow paint. How many of the small cubes will have yellow
paint on their faces?
What is the area of the quadrilateral APOQ? Working on the building
blocks will give you some insights that may help you to work it
Chris is enjoying a swim but needs to get back for lunch. If she can swim at 3 m/s and run at 7m/sec, how far along the bank should she land in order to get back as quickly as possible?
The area of a square inscribed in a circle with a unit radius is,
satisfyingly, 2. What is the area of a regular hexagon inscribed in
a circle with a unit radius?
In a three-dimensional version of noughts and crosses, how many winning lines can you make?
The diagonals of a trapezium divide it into four parts. Can you
create a trapezium where three of those parts are equal in area?
Manufacturers need to minimise the amount of material used to make
their product. What is the best cross-section for a gutter?
Show that is it impossible to have a tetrahedron whose six edges
have lengths 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 units...