A decorator can buy pink paint from two manufacturers. What is the
least number he would need of each type in order to produce
different shades of pink.
Is it always possible to combine two paints made up in the ratios
1:x and 1:y and turn them into paint made up in the ratio a:b ? Can
you find an efficent way of doing this?
The Egyptians expressed all fractions as the sum of different unit
fractions. The Greedy Algorithm might provide us with an efficient
way of doing this.
Can you see how to build a harmonic triangle? Can you work out the next two rows?
Can all unit fractions be written as the sum of two unit fractions?
A jigsaw where pieces only go together if the fractions are
A circle of radius r touches two sides of a right angled triangle,
sides x and y, and has its centre on the hypotenuse. Can you prove
the formula linking x, y and r?
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
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?
Can you find rectangles where the value of the area is the same as the value of the perimeter?
A mother wants to share a sum of money by giving each of her
children in turn a lump sum plus a fraction of the remainder. How
can she do this in order to share the money out equally?
Manufacturers need to minimise the amount of material used to make
their product. What is the best cross-section for a gutter?
Can you find the area of a parallelogram defined by two vectors?
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. . . .
If the hypotenuse (base) length is 100cm and if an extra line
splits the base into 36cm and 64cm parts, what were the side
lengths for the original right-angled triangle?
The diagonals of a trapezium divide it into four parts. Can you
create a trapezium where three of those parts are equal in area?
Rectangle PQRS has X and Y on the edges. Triangles PQY, YRX and XSP
have equal areas. Prove X and Y divide the sides of PQRS in the
Five children went into the sweet shop after school. There were
choco bars, chews, mini eggs and lollypops, all costing under 50p.
Suggest a way in which Nathan could spend all his money.
A circle is inscribed in a triangle which has side lengths of 8, 15
and 17 cm. What is the radius of the circle?
If: A + C = A; F x D = F; B - G = G; A + H = E; B / H = G; E - G =
F and A-H represent the numbers from 0 to 7 Find the values of A,
B, C, D, E, F and H.
Have a go at creating these images based on circles. What do you notice about the areas of the different sections?
Choose four consecutive whole numbers. Multiply the first and last numbers together. Multiply the middle pair together. What do you notice?
A napkin is folded so that a corner coincides with the midpoint of
an opposite edge . Investigate the three triangles formed .
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.
Can you maximise the area available to a grazing goat?
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?
The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect
square - can you explain why?
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and
two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd
numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?
Each of the following shapes is made from arcs of a circle of
radius r. What is the perimeter of a shape with 3, 4, 5 and n
A 2 by 3 rectangle contains 8 squares and a 3 by 4 rectangle
contains 20 squares. What size rectangle(s) contain(s) exactly 100
squares? Can you find them all?
A game for 2 or more people, based on the traditional card game
Rummy. Players aim to make two `tricks', where each trick has to
consist of a picture of a shape, a name that describes that shape,
and. . . .
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
There is a particular value of x, and a value of y to go with it,
which make all five expressions equal in value, can you find that
x, y pair ?
Can you find an efficient method to work out how many handshakes
there would be if hundreds of people met?
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
Imagine you have a large supply of 3kg and 8kg weights. How many of each weight would you need for the average (mean) of the weights to be 6kg? What other averages could you have?
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?
This shape comprises four semi-circles. What is the relationship
between the area of the shaded region and the area of the circle on
AB as diameter?
Think of two whole numbers under 10. Take one of them and add 1. Multiply by 5. Add 1 again. Double your answer. Subract 1. Add your second number. Add 2. Double again. Subtract 8. Halve this number. . . .
Triangle ABC is isosceles while triangle DEF is equilateral. Find
one angle in terms of the other two.
A car's milometer reads 4631 miles and the trip meter has 173.3 on
it. How many more miles must the car travel before the two numbers
contain the same digits in the same order?
Two motorboats travelling up and down a lake at constant speeds
leave opposite ends A and B at the same instant, passing each
other, for the first time 600 metres from A, and on their return,
400. . . .
The number 2.525252525252.... can be written as a fraction. What is
the sum of the denominator and numerator?
Sissa cleverly asked the King for a reward that sounded quite modest but turned out to be rather large...
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
Four bags contain a large number of 1s, 3s, 5s and 7s. Pick any ten
numbers from the bags above so that their total is 37.
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.
Explore the effect of combining enlargements.
Explore the effect of reflecting in two parallel mirror lines.