What shape is the overlap when you slide one of these shapes half way across another? Can you picture it in your head? Use the interactivity to check your visualisation.
Start with a large square, join the midpoints of its sides, you'll see four right angled triangles. Remove these triangles, a second square is left. Repeat the operation. What happens?
These are pictures of the sea defences at New Brighton. Can you
work out what a basic shape might be in both images of the sea wall
and work out a way they might fit together?
What is the total area of the four outside triangles which are
outlined in red in this arrangement of squares inside each other?
What shape has Harry drawn on this clock face? Can you find its
area? What is the largest number of square tiles that could cover
Can you work out what shape is made when this piece of paper is folded up using the crease pattern shown?
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 group activity using visualisation of squares and triangles.
Mathematics is the study of patterns. Studying pattern is an
opportunity to observe, hypothesise, experiment, discover and
What can you see? What do you notice? What questions can you ask?
These points all mark the vertices (corners) of ten hidden squares.
Can you find the 10 hidden squares?
We start with one yellow cube and build around it to make a 3x3x3 cube with red cubes. Then we build around that red cube with blue cubes and so on. How many cubes of each colour have we used?
If you can post the triangle with either the blue or yellow colour face up, how many ways can it be posted altogether?
Eight children each had a cube made from modelling clay. They cut them into four pieces which were all exactly the same shape and size. Whose pieces are the same? Can you decide who made each set?
Move four sticks so there are exactly four triangles.
A cheap and simple toy with lots of mathematics. Can you interpret
the images that are produced? Can you predict the pattern that will
be produced using different wheels?
Imagine a 3 by 3 by 3 cube. If you and a friend drill holes in some of the small cubes in the ways described, how many will have holes drilled through them?
What is the greatest number of squares you can make by overlapping
This article for teachers discusses examples of problems in which
there is no obvious method but in which children can be encouraged
to think deeply about the context and extend their ability to. . . .
Can you work out what shape is made by folding in this way? Why not create some patterns using this shape but in different sizes?
Choose a box and work out the smallest rectangle of paper needed to
wrap it so that it is completely covered.
Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can
introduce pupils to the idea of topology.
What is the shape of wrapping paper that you would need to completely wrap this model?
We're excited about this new program for drawing beautiful mathematical designs. Can you work out how we made our first few pictures and, even better, share your most elegant solutions with us?
How many pieces of string have been used in these patterns? Can you
describe how you know?
Can you find a way of representing these arrangements of balls?
How many loops of string have been used to make these patterns?
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?
A game for 2 players. Can be played online. One player has 1 red
counter, the other has 4 blue. The red counter needs to reach the
other side, and the blue needs to trap the red.
Have a go at this 3D extension to the Pebbles problem.
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?
Square It game for an adult and child. Can you come up with a way of always winning this game?
Exploring and predicting folding, cutting and punching holes and
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
Investigate how the four L-shapes fit together to make an enlarged L-shape. You could explore this idea with other shapes too.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these convex shapes?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the rocket?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this plaque design?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the telescope and microscope?
Take it in turns to place a domino on the grid. One to be placed horizontally and the other vertically. Can you make it impossible for your opponent to play?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these rabbits?
A game for two players. You'll need some counters.
A shape and space game for 2,3 or 4 players. Be the last person to be able to place a pentomino piece on the playing board. Play with card, or on the computer.
Here are shadows of some 3D shapes. What shapes could have made
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of Mai Ling and Chi Wing?
This article for teachers describes how modelling number properties
involving multiplication using an array of objects not only allows
children to represent their thinking with concrete materials,. . . .
A game for 2 players. Given a board of dots in a grid pattern, players take turns drawing a line by connecting 2 adjacent dots. Your goal is to complete more squares than your opponent.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Wai Ping, Wah Ming and Chi Wing?
A hundred square has been printed on both sides of a piece of paper. What is on the back of 100? 58? 23? 19?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?