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 maximise the area available to a grazing goat?
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. . . .
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
A napkin is folded so that a corner coincides with the midpoint of
an opposite edge . Investigate the three triangles formed .
What is the same and what is different about these circle
questions? What connections can you make?
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
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.
What size square corners should be cut from a square piece of paper to make a box with the largest possible volume?
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?
Which has the greatest area, a circle or a square inscribed in an
isosceles, right angle triangle?
Can you find rectangles where the value of the area is the same as the value of the perimeter?
Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd
numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?
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?
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
Explore when it is possible to construct a circle which just
touches all four sides of a quadrilateral.
Can you find an efficient method to work out how many handshakes
there would be if hundreds of people met?
Have a go at creating these images based on circles. What do you notice about the areas of the different sections?
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?
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?
Explore the effect of reflecting in two parallel mirror lines.
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?
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.
Can you find the area of a parallelogram defined by two vectors?
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.
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?
A circle is inscribed in a triangle which has side lengths of 8, 15
and 17 cm. What is the radius of the circle?
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?
How many different symmetrical shapes can you make by shading triangles or squares?
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?
Triangle ABC is isosceles while triangle DEF is equilateral. Find
one angle in terms of the other two.
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 country has decided to have just two different coins, 3z and 5z
coins. Which totals can be made? Is there a largest total that
cannot be made? How do you know?
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and
two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
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?
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?
Explore the effect of combining enlargements.
Many numbers can be expressed as the difference of two perfect squares. What do you notice about the numbers you CANNOT make?
Sissa cleverly asked the King for a reward that sounded quite modest but turned out to be rather large...
Can you see how to build a harmonic triangle? Can you work out the next two rows?
Many numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers. For example, 15=7+8 and 10=1+2+3+4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed in this way?
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. . . .
Can all unit fractions be written as the sum of two unit fractions?
What is the greatest volume you can get for a rectangular (cuboid)
parcel if the maximum combined length and girth are 2 metres?
On the graph there are 28 marked points. These points all mark the
vertices (corners) of eight hidden squares. Can you find the eight
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?
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. . . .