What can you say about these shapes? This problem challenges you to
create shapes with different areas and perimeters.
Nine squares with side lengths 1, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, and 18 cm can be fitted together to form a rectangle. What are the dimensions of the rectangle?
If I use 12 green tiles to represent my lawn, how many different
ways could I arrange them? How many border tiles would I need each
A hallway floor is tiled and each tile is one foot square. Given
that the number of tiles around the perimeter is EXACTLY half the
total number of tiles, find the possible dimensions of the hallway.
These rectangles have been torn. How many squares did each one have
inside it before it was ripped?
This practical challenge invites you to investigate the different
squares you can make on a square geoboard or pegboard.
What fractions of the largest circle are the two shaded regions?
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square
tiles of different sizes?
Can you help the children find the two triangles which have the
lengths of two sides numerically equal to their areas?
In the four examples below identical squares of side one unit contain some circles shaded blue. In which of the four examples is the shaded area greatest?
Use the interactivity to find all the different right-angled
triangles you can make by just moving one corner of the starting
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
Explore one of these five pictures.
Here are many ideas for you to investigate - all linked with the
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper
to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
What is the largest 'ribbon square' you can make? And the smallest? How many different squares can you make altogether?
Investigate the area of 'slices' cut off this cube of cheese. What
would happen if you had different-sized block of cheese to start
A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area
around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.
Investigate all the different squares you can make on this 5 by 5
grid by making your starting side go from the bottom left hand
point. Can you find out the areas of all these squares?
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can
you investigate patios of different sizes?
Can you draw a square in which the perimeter is numerically equal
to the area?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.
My local DIY shop calculates the price of its windows according to the area of glass and the length of frame used. Can you work out how they arrived at these prices?
In this game for two players, you throw two dice and find the product. How many shapes can you draw on the grid which have that area or perimeter?
How many tiles do we need to tile these patios?
An activity for high-attaining learners which involves making a new cylinder from a cardboard tube.
The area of a square inscribed in a circle with a unit radius is,
satisfyingly, 2. What is the area of a regular hexagon inscribed in
a circle with a unit radius?
Polygons drawn on square dotty paper have dots on their perimeter
(p) and often internal (i) ones as well. Find a relationship
between p, i and the area of the polygons.
How many centimetres of rope will I need to make another mat just
like the one I have here?
Points P, Q, R and S each divide the sides AB, BC, CD and DA respectively in the ratio of 2 : 1. Join the points. What is the area of the parallelogram PQRS in relation to the original rectangle?
A task which depends on members of the group noticing the needs of
others and responding.
These pictures were made by starting with a square, finding the
half-way point on each side and joining those points up. You could
investigate your own starting shape.
Can you rank these sets of quantities in order, from smallest to largest? Can you provide convincing evidence for your rankings?
I'm thinking of a rectangle with an area of 24. What could its perimeter be?
How can you change the area of a shape but keep its perimeter the same? How can you change the perimeter but keep the area the same?
What is the largest number of circles we can fit into the frame
without them overlapping? How do you know? What will happen if you
try the other shapes?
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
Explore this interactivity and see if you can work out what it
does. Could you use it to estimate the area of a shape?
I cut this square into two different shapes. What can you say about
the relationship between them?
It's easy to work out the areas of most squares that we meet, but
what if they were tilted?
This article, written for teachers, discusses the merits of
different kinds of resources: those which involve exploration and
those which centre on calculation.
Semicircles are drawn on the sides of a rectangle ABCD. A circle passing through points ABCD carves out four crescent-shaped regions. Prove that the sum of the areas of the four crescents is equal to. . . .
You have a 12 by 9 foot carpet with an 8 by 1 foot hole exactly in
the middle. Cut the carpet into two pieces to make a 10 by 10 foot
Which is a better fit, a square peg in a round hole or a round peg
in a square hole?
Can you work out the area of the inner square and give an
explanation of how you did it?
What is the shape and dimensions of a box that will contain six cups and have as small a surface area as possible.
Investigate the different ways of cutting a perfectly circular pie into equal pieces using exactly 3 cuts. The cuts have to be along chords of the circle (which might be diameters).
At the corner of the cube circular arcs are drawn and the area enclosed shaded. What fraction of the surface area of the cube is shaded? Try working out the answer without recourse to pencil and. . . .
What are the areas of these triangles? What do you notice? Can you generalise to other "families" of triangles?