At the time of writing the hour and minute hands of my clock are at
right angles. How long will it be before they are at right angles
In how many ways can you fit all three pieces together to make
shapes with line symmetry?
A train leaves on time. After it has gone 8 miles (at 33mph) the driver looks at his watch and sees that the hour hand is exactly over the minute hand. When did the train leave the station?
Charlie and Alison have been drawing patterns on coordinate grids. Can you picture where the patterns lead?
A bus route has a total duration of 40 minutes. Every 10 minutes,
two buses set out, one from each end. How many buses will one bus
meet on its way from one end to the other end?
Mathematics is the study of patterns. Studying pattern is an
opportunity to observe, hypothesise, experiment, discover and
Draw some isosceles triangles with an area of $9$cm$^2$ and a vertex at (20,20). If all the vertices must have whole number coordinates, how many is it possible to draw?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, involves open-topped boxes made with interlocking cubes. Explore the number of units of paint that are needed to cover the boxes. . . .
Anne completes a circuit around a circular track in 40 seconds.
Brenda runs in the opposite direction and meets Anne every 15
seconds. How long does it take Brenda to run around the track?
Can you make a 3x3 cube with these shapes made from small cubes?
Billy's class had a robot called Fred who could draw with chalk
held underneath him. What shapes did the pupils make Fred draw?
On a clock the three hands - the second, minute and hour hands - are on the same axis. How often in a 24 hour day will the second hand be parallel to either of the two other hands?
These points all mark the vertices (corners) of ten hidden squares.
Can you find the 10 hidden squares?
This 100 square jigsaw is written in code. It starts with 1 and ends with 100. Can you build it up?
A dog is looking for a good place to bury his bone. Can you work
out where he started and ended in each case? What possible routes
could he have taken?
When dice land edge-up, we usually roll again. But what if we
Can you describe this route to infinity? Where will the arrows take you next?
This practical problem challenges you to make quadrilaterals with a loop of string. You'll need some friends to help!
On the graph there are 28 marked points. These points all mark the
vertices (corners) of eight hidden squares. Can you find the eight
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
A tilted square is a square with no horizontal sides. Can you
devise a general instruction for the construction of a square when
you are given just one of its sides?
Can you see why 2 by 2 could be 5? Can you predict what 2 by 10
I found these clocks in the Arts Centre at the University of
Warwick intriguing - do they really need four clocks and what times
would be ambiguous with only two or three of them?
Every day at noon a boat leaves Le Havre for New York while another
boat leaves New York for Le Havre. The ocean crossing takes seven
days. How many boats will each boat cross during their journey?
How many different symmetrical shapes can you make by shading triangles or squares?
Imagine a pyramid which is built in square layers of small cubes. If we number the cubes from the top, starting with 1, can you picture which cubes are directly below this first cube?
Players take it in turns to choose a dot on the grid. The winner is the first to have four dots that can be joined to form a square.
The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right
hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of
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,. . . .
Choose a couple of the sequences. Try to picture how to make the next, and the next, and the next... Can you describe your reasoning?
Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can
introduce pupils to the idea of topology.
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?
Slide the pieces to move Khun Phaen past all the guards into the position on the right from which he can escape to freedom.
Take a line segment of length 1. Remove the middle third. Remove
the middle thirds of what you have left. Repeat infinitely many
times, and you have the Cantor Set. Can you picture it?
If you move the tiles around, can you make squares with different coloured edges?
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.
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 fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the workmen?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the candle and sundial?
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the rocket?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this plaque design?
Use a single sheet of A4 paper and make a cylinder having the greatest possible volume. The cylinder must be closed off by a circle at each end.
Draw three straight lines to separate these shapes into four groups
- each group must contain one of each shape.
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these convex shapes?
This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of
activities required to develop this thinking.
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences
between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are