Have a good look at these images. Can you describe what is happening? There are plenty more images like this on NRICH's Exploring Squares CD.
Look at the mathematics that is all around us - this circular
window is a wonderful example.
This article for teachers gives some food for thought when teaching
ideas about area.
Read about David Hilbert who proved that any polygon could be cut up into a certain number of pieces that could be put back together to form any other polygon of equal area.
Grandpa was measuring a rug using yards, feet and inches. Can you
help William to work out its area?
A simple visual exploration into halving and doubling.
You have pitched your tent (the red triangle) on an island. Can you
move it to the position shown by the purple triangle making sure
you obey the rules?
How would you move the bands on the pegboard to alter these shapes?
What can you say about these shapes? This problem challenges you to create shapes with different areas and perimeters.
How many centimetres of rope will I need to make another mat just
like the one I have here?
Use the information on these cards to draw the shape that is being described.
A circle with the radius of 2.2 centimetres is drawn touching the sides of a square. What area of the square is NOT covered by the circle?
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
Seven small rectangular pictures have one inch wide frames. The
frames are removed and the pictures are fitted together like a
jigsaw to make a rectangle of length 12 inches. Find the dimensions
of. . . .
Can you draw a square in which the perimeter is numerically equal
to the area?
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
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?
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
A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area
around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can
you investigate patios of different sizes?
Explore one of these five pictures.
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
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square
tiles of different sizes?
These rectangles have been torn. How many squares did each one have
inside it before it was ripped?
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?
It is possible to dissect any square into smaller squares. What is
the minimum number of squares a 13 by 13 square can be dissected
Can you work out the area of the inner square and give an
explanation of how you did it?
What is the largest 'ribbon square' you can make? And the smallest? How many different squares can you make altogether?
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?
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?
This practical challenge invites you to investigate the different
squares you can make on a square geoboard or pegboard.
How have "Warmsnug" arrived at the prices shown on their windows? Which window has been given an incorrect price?
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?
Choose a box and work out the smallest rectangle of paper needed to
wrap it so that it is completely covered.
What is the total area of the four outside triangles which are
outlined in red in this arrangement of squares inside each other?
Can you find rectangles where the value of the area is the same as the value of the perimeter?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.
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.
Measure problems for inquiring primary learners.
An activity for high-attaining learners which involves making a new cylinder from a cardboard tube.
Can you help the children find the two triangles which have the
lengths of two sides numerically equal to their areas?
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper
to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
Measure problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
Measure problems for primary learners to work on with others.
Investigate the area of 'slices' cut off this cube of cheese. What
would happen if you had different-sized block of cheese to start
If you have only 40 metres of fencing available, what is the maximum area of land you can fence off?
Investigate how this pattern of squares continues. You could
measure lengths, areas and angles.
Measure problems at primary level that may require determination.
This rectangle is cut into five pieces which fit exactly into a triangular outline and also into a square outline where the triangle, the rectangle and the square have equal areas.
It's easy to work out the areas of most squares that we meet, but
what if they were tilted?