To avoid losing think of another very well known game where the patterns of play are similar.
A right-angled isosceles triangle is rotated about the centre point of a square. What can you say about the area of the part of the square covered by the triangle as it rotates?
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 moves.
There are 27 small cubes in a 3 x 3 x 3 cube, 54 faces being visible at any one time. Is it possible to reorganise these cubes so that by dipping the large cube into a pot of paint three times you. . . .
This is an interactive net of a Rubik's cube. Twists of the 3D cube become mixes of the squares on the 2D net. Have a play and see how many scrambles you can undo!
Given the nets of 4 cubes with the faces coloured in 4 colours, build a tower so that on each vertical wall no colour is repeated, that is all 4 colours appear.
On the 3D grid a strange (and deadly) animal is lurking. Using the tracking system can you locate this creature as quickly as possible?
P is a point on the circumference of a circle radius r which rolls, without slipping, inside a circle of radius 2r. What is the locus of P?
Place a red counter in the top left corner of a 4x4 array, which is covered by 14 other smaller counters, leaving a gap in the bottom right hand corner (HOME). What is the smallest number of moves. . . .
Can you find a rule which connects consecutive triangular numbers?
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.
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?
Four rods are hinged at their ends to form a convex quadrilateral. Investigate the different shapes that the quadrilateral can take. Be patient this problem may be slow to load.
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
Two boats travel up and down a lake. Can you picture where they will cross if you know how fast each boat is travelling?
A game for 2 players
Two intersecting circles have a common chord AB. The point C moves on the circumference of the circle C1. The straight lines CA and CB meet the circle C2 at E and F respectively. As the point C. . . .
Show that all pentagonal numbers are one third of a triangular number.
Some students have been working out the number of strands needed for different sizes of cable. Can you make sense of their solutions?
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
Can you find a rule which relates triangular numbers to square numbers?
Find the point whose sum of distances from the vertices (corners) of a given triangle is a minimum.
Build gnomons that are related to the Fibonacci sequence and try to explain why this is possible.
Can you see how this picture illustrates the formula for the sum of the first six cube numbers?
You can move the 4 pieces of the jigsaw and fit them into both outlines. Explain what has happened to the missing one unit of area.
The picture illustrates the sum 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = (4 x 5)/2. Prove the general formula for the sum of the first n natural numbers and the formula for the sum of the cubes of the first n natural. . . .
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
Glarsynost lives on a planet whose shape is that of a perfect regular dodecahedron. Can you describe the shortest journey she can make to ensure that she will see every part of the planet?
A huge wheel is rolling past your window. What do you see?
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?
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 triangle OMN has vertices on the axes with whole number co-ordinates. How many points with whole number coordinates are there on the hypotenuse MN?
A cyclist and a runner start off simultaneously around a race track each going at a constant speed. The cyclist goes all the way around and then catches up with the runner. He then instantly turns. . . .
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 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?
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?
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. . . .
Show that among the interior angles of a convex polygon there cannot be more than three acute angles.
Charlie and Alison have been drawing patterns on coordinate grids. Can you picture where the patterns lead?
A square of area 3 square units cannot be drawn on a 2D grid so that each of its vertices have integer coordinates, but can it be drawn on a 3D grid? Investigate squares that can be drawn.
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 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. . . .
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?
Some puzzles requiring no knowledge of knot theory, just a careful inspection of the patterns. A glimpse of the classification of knots and a little about prime knots, crossing numbers and. . . .
Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can introduce pupils to the idea of topology.
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?
The opposite vertices of a square have coordinates (a,b) and (c,d). What are the coordinates of the other vertices?
A visualisation problem in which you search for vectors which sum to zero from a jumble of arrows. Will your eyes be quicker than algebra?
The triangle ABC is equilateral. The arc AB has centre C, the arc BC has centre A and the arc CA has centre B. Explain how and why this shape can roll along between two parallel tracks.