Manufacturers need to minimise the amount of material used to make their product. What is the best cross-section for a gutter?

If the sides of the triangle in the diagram are 3, 4 and 5, what is the area of the shaded square?

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. . . .

Two motorboats travelling up and down a lake at constant speeds leave opposite ends A and B at the same instant, passing each other, for the first time 600 metres from A, and on their return, 400. . . .

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.

Can you find the area of a parallelogram defined by two vectors?

What is the ratio of the area of a square inscribed in a semicircle to the area of the square inscribed in the entire circle?

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.

The sum of the numbers 4 and 1 [1/3] is the same as the product of 4 and 1 [1/3]; that is to say 4 + 1 [1/3] = 4 × 1 [1/3]. What other numbers have the sum equal to the product and can this be so for. . . .

Arrange the numbers 1 to 16 into a 4 by 4 array. Choose a number. Cross out the numbers on the same row and column. Repeat this process. Add up you four numbers. Why do they always add up to 34?

Imagine starting with one yellow cube and covering it all over with a single layer of red cubes, and then covering that cube with a layer of blue cubes. How many red and blue cubes would you need?

A 2-Digit number is squared. When this 2-digit number is reversed and squared, the difference between the squares is also a square. What is the 2-digit number?

My two digit number is special because adding the sum of its digits to the product of its digits gives me my original number. What could my number be?

Can you show that you can share a square pizza equally between two people by cutting it four times using vertical, horizontal and diagonal cuts through any point inside the square?

The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect square - can you explain why?

Imagine a large cube made from small red cubes being dropped into a pot of yellow paint. How many of the small cubes will have yellow paint on their faces?

Many numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers. For example, 15=7+8 and 10=1+2+3+4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed in this way?

How many more miles must the car travel before the numbers on the milometer and the trip meter contain the same digits in the same order?

Find some examples of pairs of numbers such that their sum is a factor of their product. eg. 4 + 12 = 16 and 4 × 12 = 48 and 16 is a factor of 48.

Choose four consecutive whole numbers. Multiply the first and last numbers together. Multiply the middle pair together. What do you notice?

Try entering different sets of numbers in the number pyramids. How does the total at the top change?

When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...

Think of a number... follow the machine's instructions. I know what your number is! Can you explain how I know?

Think of a number and follow my instructions. Tell me your answer, and I'll tell you what you started with! Can you explain how I know?

We can show that (x + 1)² = x² + 2x + 1 by considering the area of an (x + 1) by (x + 1) square. Show in a similar way that (x + 2)² = x² + 4x + 4

Pick the number of times a week that you eat chocolate. This number must be more than one but less than ten. Multiply this number by 2. Add 5 (for Sunday). Multiply by 50... Can you explain why it. . . .

What would you get if you continued this sequence of fraction sums? 1/2 + 2/1 = 2/3 + 3/2 = 3/4 + 4/3 =

Given an equilateral triangle inside an isosceles triangle, can you find a relationship between the angles?

Crosses can be drawn on number grids of various sizes. What do you notice when you add opposite ends?

32 x 38 = 30 x 40 + 2 x 8; 34 x 36 = 30 x 40 + 4 x 6; 56 x 54 = 50 x 60 + 6 x 4; 73 x 77 = 70 x 80 + 3 x 7 Verify and generalise if possible.

A mother wants to share a sum of money by giving each of her children in turn a lump sum plus a fraction of the remainder. How can she do this in order to share the money out equally?

Many numbers can be expressed as the difference of two perfect squares. What do you notice about the numbers you CANNOT make?

A job needs three men but in fact six people do it. When it is finished they are all paid the same. How much was paid in total, and much does each man get if the money is shared as Fred suggests?

Watch these videos to see how Phoebe, Alice and Luke chose to draw 7 squares. How would they draw 100?

The diagram shows a 5 by 5 geoboard with 25 pins set out in a square array. Squares are made by stretching rubber bands round specific pins. What is the total number of squares that can be made on a. . . .

A little bit of algebra explains this 'magic'. Ask a friend to pick 3 consecutive numbers and to tell you a multiple of 3. Then ask them to add the four numbers and multiply by 67, and to tell you. . . .

The number 27 is special because it is three times the sum of its digits 27 = 3 (2 + 7). Find some two digit numbers that are SEVEN times the sum of their digits (seven-up numbers)?

A box has faces with areas 3, 12 and 25 square centimetres. What is the volume of the box?

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. . . .

Investigate how you can work out what day of the week your birthday will be on next year, and the year after...

A country has decided to have just two different coins, 3z and 5z coins. Which totals can be made? Is there a largest total that cannot be made? How do you know?

How many winning lines can you make in a three-dimensional version of noughts and crosses?

How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there are in different sized boxes?

Think of a two digit number, reverse the digits, and add the numbers together. Something special happens...

Find some triples of whole numbers a, b and c such that a^2 + b^2 + c^2 is a multiple of 4. Is it necessarily the case that a, b and c must all be even? If so, can you explain why?

Take any four digit number. Move the first digit to the 'back of the queue' and move the rest along. Now add your two numbers. What properties do your answers always have?

The diagram illustrates the formula: 1 + 3 + 5 + ... + (2n - 1) = nĀ² Use the diagram to show that any odd number is the difference of two squares.

The well known Fibonacci sequence is 1 ,1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21.... How many Fibonacci sequences can you find containing the number 196 as one of the terms?

Some students have been working out the number of strands needed for different sizes of cable. Can you make sense of their solutions?

Take a few whole numbers away from a triangle number. If you know the mean of the remaining numbers can you find the triangle number and which numbers were removed?