Look at the mathematics that is all around us - this circular
window is a wonderful example.
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).
What fractions of the largest circle are the two shaded regions?
Can you draw a square in which the perimeter is numerically equal
to the area?
Grandpa was measuring a rug using yards, feet and inches. Can you
help William to work out its area?
Here are many ideas for you to investigate - all linked with the
Measure problems at primary level that may require determination.
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.
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.
How many centimetres of rope will I need to make another mat just
like the one I have here?
Measure problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
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.
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
Measure problems for inquiring primary learners.
A simple visual exploration into halving and doubling.
I'm thinking of a rectangle with an area of 24. What could its perimeter be?
Use the information on these cards to draw the shape that is being described.
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?
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?
How many tiles do we need to tile these patios?
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?
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
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?
I cut this square into two different shapes. What can you say about
the relationship between them?
What happens to the area and volume of 2D and 3D shapes when you
What can you say about these shapes? This problem challenges you to
create shapes with different areas and perimeters.
Measure problems for primary learners to work on with others.
How would you move the bands on the pegboard to alter these shapes?
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. . . .
Bluey-green, white and transparent squares with a few odd bits of
shapes around the perimeter. But, how many squares are there of
each type in the complete circle? Study the picture and make. . . .
Can you find rectangles where the value of the area is the same as the value of the perimeter?
Which is a better fit, a square peg in a round hole or a round peg
in a square hole?
Investigate the area of 'slices' cut off this cube of cheese. What
would happen if you had different-sized block of cheese to start
How have "Warmsnug" arrived at the prices shown on their windows? Which window has been given an incorrect price?
A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area
around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.
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?
Explore this interactivity and see if you can work out what it
does. Could you use it to estimate the area of a shape?
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?
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. . . .
What do these two triangles have in common? How are they related?
Draw some isosceles triangles with an area of $9$cm$^2$ and a vertex at (20,20). If all the vertices must have whole number coordinates, how many is it possible to draw?
Use the interactivity to find all the different right-angled triangles you can make by just moving one corner of the starting triangle.
A task which depends on members of the group noticing the needs of
others and responding.
These rectangles have been torn. How many squares did each one have
inside it before it was ripped?
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
Choose a box and work out the smallest rectangle of paper needed to
wrap it so that it is completely covered.
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper
to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.