Investigate how you can work out what day of the week your birthday will be on next year, and the year after...
The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect
square - can you explain why?
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.
Can you convince me of each of the following: If a square number is
multiplied by a square number the product is ALWAYS a square
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?
Find the five distinct digits N, R, I, C and H in the following
The problem is how did Archimedes calculate the lengths of the sides of the polygons which needed him to be able to calculate square roots?
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?
Find the missing angle between the two secants to the circle when
the two angles at the centre subtended by the arcs created by the
intersections of the secants and the circle are 50 and 120 degrees.
If you take two tests and get a marks out of a maximum b in the first and c marks out of d in the second, does the mediant (a+c)/(b+d)lie between the results for the two tests separately.
Attach weights of 1, 2, 4, and 8 units to the four attachment
points on the bar. Move the bar from side to side until you find a
balance point. Is it possible to predict that position?
Can you use the diagram to prove the AM-GM inequality?
Take any two numbers between 0 and 1. Prove that the sum of the
numbers is always less than one plus their product?
Balance the bar with the three weight on the inside.
When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...
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?
A, B & C own a half, a third and a sixth of a coin collection.
Each grab some coins, return some, then share equally what they had
put back, finishing with their own share. How rich are they?
What would you get if you continued this sequence of fraction sums?
1/2 + 2/1 =
2/3 + 3/2 =
3/4 + 4/3 =
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?
Janine noticed, while studying some cube numbers, that if you take
three consecutive whole numbers and multiply them together and then
add the middle number of the three, you get the middle number. . . .
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. . . .
Can you make sense of these three proofs of Pythagoras' Theorem?
Choose four consecutive whole numbers. Multiply the first and last numbers together. Multiply the middle pair together. What do you notice?
My train left London between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. and arrived in Paris
between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. At the start and end of the journey the
hands on my watch were in exactly the same positions but the. . . .
Some students have been working out the number of strands needed for different sizes of cable. Can you make sense of their solutions?
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. . . .
Watch these videos to see how Phoebe, Alice and Luke chose to draw 7 squares. How would they draw 100?
In a three-dimensional version of noughts and crosses, how many winning lines can you make?
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. . . .
Think of a two digit number, reverse the digits, and add the numbers together. Something special happens...
If the sides of the triangle in the diagram are 3, 4 and 5, what is
the area of the shaded square?
Two semi-circles (each of radius 1/2) touch each other, and a semi-circle of radius 1 touches both of them. Find the radius of the circle which touches all three semi-circles.
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. . . .
Show that all pentagonal numbers are one third of a triangular number.
Use algebra to reason why 16 and 32 are impossible to create as the
sum of consecutive numbers.
How to build your own magic squares.
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?
Crosses can be drawn on number grids of various sizes. What do you notice when you add opposite ends?
Jo made a cube from some smaller cubes, painted some of the faces
of the large cube, and then took it apart again. 45 small cubes had
no paint on them at all. How many small cubes did Jo use?
How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there
are in different sized boxes?
Sets of integers like 3, 4, 5 are called Pythagorean Triples, because they could be the lengths of the sides of a right-angled triangle. Can you find any more?
How good are you at finding the formula for a number pattern ?
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?
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?
Can you find a rule which connects consecutive triangular numbers?
A moveable screen slides along a mirrored corridor towards a
centrally placed light source. A ray of light from that source is
directed towards a wall of the corridor, which it strikes at 45
degrees. . . .
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?
Think of a number... follow the machine's instructions. I know what
your number is! Can you explain how I know?
Charlie likes tablecloths that use as many colours as possible, but insists that his tablecloths have some symmetry. Can you work out how many colours he needs for different tablecloth designs?
Many numbers can be expressed as the difference of two perfect squares. What do you notice about the numbers you CANNOT make?