This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of
activities required to develop this thinking.
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?
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. . . .
What can you see? What do you notice? What questions can you ask?
Try this interactive strategy game for 2
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. . . .
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and
reasoning to agree a final product.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming?
On which of these shapes can you trace a path along all of its
edges, without going over any edge twice?
You have been given three shapes made out of sponge: a sphere, a cylinder and a cone. Your challenge is to find out how to cut them to make different shapes for printing.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Granma T?
Can you visualise what shape this piece of paper will make when it is folded?
The reader is invited to investigate changes (or permutations) in the ringing of church bells, illustrated by braid diagrams showing the order in which the bells are rung.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these convex shapes?
How many DIFFERENT quadrilaterals can be made by joining the dots
on the 8-point circle?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this telephone?
Make a flower design using the same shape made out of different sizes of paper.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the child walking home from school?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these people?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this brazier for roasting chestnuts?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming playing the board game?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Fung at the table?
Use the lines on this figure to show how the square can be divided into 2 halves, 3 thirds, 6 sixths and 9 ninths.
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?
Looking at the picture of this Jomista Mat, can you decribe what
you see? Why not try and make one yourself?
Here's a simple way to make a Tangram without any measuring or
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. . . .
In each of the pictures the invitation is for you to: Count what you see. Identify how you think the pattern would continue.
Reasoning about the number of matches needed to build squares that
share their sides.
Can you make a 3x3 cube with these shapes made from small cubes?
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.
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences
between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or
DVDs? How about using five, then six?
These points all mark the vertices (corners) of ten hidden squares.
Can you find the 10 hidden squares?
Take a rectangle of paper and fold it in half, and half again, to
make four smaller rectangles. How many different ways can you fold
Exchange the positions of the two sets of counters in the least possible number of moves
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. . . .
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?
For this task, you'll need an A4 sheet and two A5 transparent sheets. Decide on a way of arranging the A5 sheets on top of the A4 sheet and explore ...
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 outlines of the lobster, yacht and cyclist?
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?
Imagine a wheel with different markings painted on it at regular
intervals. Can you predict the colour of the 18th mark? The 100th
Investigate the number of paths you can take from one vertex to
another in these 3D shapes. Is it possible to take an odd number
and an even number of paths to the same vertex?
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?
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
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!
Can you work out what is wrong with the cogs on a UK 2 pound coin?
Can you cut a regular hexagon into two pieces to make a
parallelogram? Try cutting it into three pieces to make a rhombus!