This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of activities required to develop this thinking.
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and reasoning to agree a final product.
How many different ways can I lay 10 paving slabs, each 2 foot by 1 foot, to make a path 2 foot wide and 10 foot long from my back door into my garden, without cutting any of the paving slabs?
Imagine you have six different colours of paint. You paint a cube using a different colour for each of the six faces. How many different cubes can be painted using the same set of six colours?
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. . . .
The whole set of tiles is used to make a square. This has a green and blue border. There are no green or blue tiles anywhere in the square except on this border. How many tiles are there in the set?
Try this interactive strategy game for 2
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?
This article is based on some of the ideas that emerged during the production of a book which takes visualising as its focus. We began to identify problems which helped us to take a structured view. . . .
Find all the ways to cut out a 'net' of six squares that can be folded into a cube.
Blue Flibbins are so jealous of their red partners that they will not leave them on their own with any other bue Flibbin. What is the quickest way of getting the five pairs of Flibbins safely to. . . .
A rectangular field has two posts with a ring on top of each post. There are two quarrelsome goats and plenty of ropes which you can tie to their collars. How can you secure them so they can't. . . .
Euler discussed whether or not it was possible to stroll around Koenigsberg crossing each of its seven bridges exactly once. Experiment with different numbers of islands and bridges.
Bilbo goes on an adventure, before arriving back home. Using the information given about his journey, can you work out where Bilbo lives?
This is the first article in a series which aim to provide some insight into the way spatial thinking develops in children, and draw on a range of reported research. The focus of this article is the. . . .
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?
What can you see? What do you notice? What questions can you ask?
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
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.
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?
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?
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?
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?
Can you cross each of the seven bridges that join the north and south of the river to the two islands, once and once only, without retracing your steps?
Charlie and Alison have been drawing patterns on coordinate grids. Can you picture where the patterns lead?
Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can introduce pupils to the idea of topology.
Draw three straight lines to separate these shapes into four groups - each group must contain one of each shape.
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are the same.
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or ruling lines.
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,. . . .
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.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the workmen?
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 outline of Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?
Slide the pieces to move Khun Phaen past all the guards into the position on the right from which he can escape to freedom.
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 moves.
Can you predict when you'll be clapping and when you'll be clicking if you start this rhythm? How about when a friend begins a new rhythm at the same time?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this goat and giraffe?
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this plaque design?
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?
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 fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the telescope and microscope?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these rabbits?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the rocket?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this junk?
Billy's class had a robot called Fred who could draw with chalk held underneath him. What shapes did the pupils make Fred draw?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this sports car?
These points all mark the vertices (corners) of ten hidden squares. Can you find the 10 hidden squares?