A useful visualising exercise which offers opportunities for
discussion and generalising, and which could be used for thinking
about the formulae needed for generating the results on a
Is it possible to remove ten unit cubes from a 3 by 3 by 3 cube made from 27 unit cubes so that the surface area of the remaining solid is the same as the surface area of the original 3 by 3 by 3. . . .
In the game of Noughts and Crosses there are 8 distinct winning
lines. How many distinct winning lines are there in a game played
on a 3 by 3 by 3 board, with 27 cells?
What is the shape of wrapping paper that you would need to completely wrap this model?
Each of the nets of nine solid shapes has been cut into two pieces. Can you see which pieces go together?
Which of the following cubes can be made from these nets?
One face of a regular tetrahedron is painted blue and each of the
remaining faces are painted using one of the colours red, green or
yellow. How many different possibilities are there?
Choose a box and work out the smallest rectangle of paper needed to
wrap it so that it is completely covered.
A half-cube is cut into two pieces by a plane through the long diagonal and at right angles to it. Can you draw a net of these pieces? Are they identical?
Find all the ways to cut out a 'net' of six squares that can be
folded into a cube.
This problem invites you to build 3D shapes using two different
triangles. Can you make the shapes from the pictures?
Imagine you are suspending a cube from one vertex (corner) and
allowing it to hang freely. Now imagine you are lowering it into
water until it is exactly half submerged. What shape does the
surface. . . .
Here are the six faces of a cube - in no particular order. Here are
three views of the cube. Can you deduce where the faces are in
relation to each other and record them on the net of this cube?
Imagine a 4 by 4 by 4 cube. If you and a friend drill holes in some of the small cubes in the ways described, how many will not have holes drilled through them?
This problem is about investigating whether it is possible to start at one vertex of a platonic solid and visit every other vertex once only returning to the vertex you started at.
A 3x3x3 cube may be reduced to unit cubes in six saw cuts. If after
every cut you can rearrange the pieces before cutting straight
through, can you do it in fewer?
A game has a special dice with a colour spot on each face. These three pictures show different views of the same dice. What colour is opposite blue?
Imagine a 3 by 3 by 3 cube made of 9 small cubes. Each face of the large cube is painted a different colour. How many small cubes will have two painted faces? Where are they?
Can you make a 3x3 cube with these shapes made from small cubes?
Can you use small coloured cubes to make a 3 by 3 by 3 cube so that each face of the bigger cube contains one of each colour?
Can you arrange the shapes in a chain so that each one shares a
face (or faces) that are the same shape as the one that follows it?
An activity centred around observations of dots and how we visualise number arrangement patterns.
Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can
introduce pupils to the idea of topology.
Exploring and predicting folding, cutting and punching holes and
Exchange the positions of the two sets of counters in the least possible number of moves
Use the interactivity to listen to the bells ringing a pattern. Now
it's your turn! Play one of the bells yourself. How do you know
when it is your turn to ring?
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and
reasoning to agree a final product.
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?
Use the lines on this figure to show how the square can be divided into 2 halves, 3 thirds, 6 sixths and 9 ninths.
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or
This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of
activities required to develop this thinking.
On which of these shapes can you trace a path along all of its
edges, without going over any edge twice?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this goat and giraffe?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this sports car?
Billy's class had a robot called Fred who could draw with chalk
held underneath him. What shapes did the pupils make Fred draw?
In each of the pictures the invitation is for you to: Count what you see. Identify how you think the pattern would continue.
These points all mark the vertices (corners) of ten hidden squares.
Can you find the 10 hidden squares?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these convex shapes?
Looking at the picture of this Jomista Mat, can you decribe what
you see? Why not try and make one yourself?
An extension of noughts and crosses in which the grid is enlarged
and the length of the winning line can to altered to 3, 4 or 5.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences
between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
How can the same pieces of the tangram make this bowl before and after it was chipped? Use the interactivity to try and work out what is going on!
Investigate how the four L-shapes fit together to make an enlarged L-shape. You could explore this idea with other shapes too.
This challenge involves eight three-cube models made from interlocking cubes. Investigate different ways of putting the models together then compare your constructions.
Which of these dice are right-handed and which are left-handed?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of Mai Ling and Chi Wing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the watering can and man in a boat?