Draw three straight lines to separate these shapes into four groups
- each group must contain one of each shape.
This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of
activities required to develop this thinking.
Choose a box and work out the smallest rectangle of paper needed to
wrap it so that it is completely covered.
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.
In how many ways can you fit two of these yellow triangles
together? Can you predict the number of ways two blue triangles can
be fitted together?
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and
reasoning to agree a final product.
What can you see? What do you notice? What questions can you ask?
Four rods, two of length a and two of length b, are linked to form
a kite. The linkage is moveable so that the angles change. What is
the maximum area of the kite?
A group activity using visualisation of squares and triangles.
Can you visualise what shape this piece of paper will make when it is folded?
How many different triangles can you make on a circular pegboard that has nine pegs?
This practical problem challenges you to make quadrilaterals with a loop of string. You'll need some friends to help!
What is the total area of the four outside triangles which are
outlined in red in this arrangement of squares inside each other?
How many DIFFERENT quadrilaterals can be made by joining the dots
on the 8-point circle?
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
Try this interactive strategy game for 2
Can you cut a regular hexagon into two pieces to make a
parallelogram? Try cutting it into three pieces to make a rhombus!
ABCDEFGH is a 3 by 3 by 3 cube. Point P is 1/3 along AB (that is AP
: PB = 1 : 2), point Q is 1/3 along GH and point R is 1/3 along ED.
What is the area of the triangle PQR?
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?
Billy's class had a robot called Fred who could draw with chalk
held underneath him. What shapes did the pupils make Fred draw?
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?
Where can you put the mirror across the square so that you can still "see" the whole square? How many different positions are possible?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this shape. How would you describe it?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the chairs?
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 the lobster, yacht and cyclist?
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or
DVDs? How about using five, then six?
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 ...
Which of the following cubes can be made from these nets?
Make a flower design using the same shape made out of different sizes of paper.
A magician took a suit of thirteen cards and held them in his hand
face down. Every card he revealed had the same value as the one he
had just finished spelling. How did this work?
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?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Granma T?
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 Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these people?
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?
Paint a stripe on a cardboard roll. Can you predict what will
happen when it is rolled across a sheet of paper?
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?
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences
between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are
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
On which of these shapes can you trace a path along all of its
edges, without going over any edge twice?
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?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Fung at the table?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this sports car?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this brazier for roasting chestnuts?