Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
In this article we show that every whole number can be written as a continued fraction of the form k/(1+k/(1+k/...)).
Can you work through these direct proofs, using our interactive
Use this interactivity to sort out the steps of the proof of the formula for the sum of an arithmetic series. The 'thermometer' will tell you how you are doing
Prove that in every tetrahedron there is a vertex such that the
three edges meeting there have lengths which could be the sides of
Show that x = 1 is a solution of the equation x^(3/2) - 8x^(-3/2) = 7 and find all other solutions.
Some puzzles requiring no knowledge of knot theory, just a careful
inspection of the patterns. A glimpse of the classification of
knots and a little about prime knots, crossing numbers and. . . .
Explore the continued fraction: 2+3/(2+3/(2+3/2+...)) What do you
notice when successive terms are taken? What happens to the terms
if the fraction goes on indefinitely?
A circle has centre O and angle POR = angle QOR. Construct tangents
at P and Q meeting at T. Draw a circle with diameter OT. Do P and Q
lie inside, or on, or outside this circle?
This article invites you to get familiar with a strategic game called "sprouts". The game is simple enough for younger children to understand, and has also provided experienced mathematicians with. . . .
Here the diagram says it all. Can you find the diagram?
This problem is a sequence of linked mini-challenges leading up to the proof of a difficult final challenge, encouraging you to think mathematically. Starting with one of the mini-challenges, how. . . .
Can you see how this picture illustrates the formula for the sum of
the first six cube numbers?
We are given a regular icosahedron having three red vertices. Show
that it has a vertex that has at least two red neighbours.
Prove that if a is a natural number and the square root of a is
rational, then it is a square number (an integer n^2 for some
Which of these triangular jigsaws are impossible to finish?
Three equilateral triangles ABC, AYX and XZB are drawn with the
point X a moveable point on AB. The points P, Q and R are the
centres of the three triangles. What can you say about triangle
What happens to the perimeter of triangle ABC as the two smaller
circles change size and roll around inside the bigger circle?
A serious but easily readable discussion of proof in mathematics with some amusing stories and some interesting examples.
Given that a, b and c are natural numbers show that if sqrt a+sqrt
b is rational then it is a natural number. Extend this to 3
This is an interactivity in which you have to sort into the correct
order the steps in the proof of the formula for the sum of a
Can you work out where the blue-and-red brick roads end?
This is an interactivity in which you have to sort the steps in the
completion of the square into the correct order to prove the
formula for the solutions of quadratic equations.
An account of methods for finding whether or not a number can be written as the sum of two or more squares or as the sum of two or more cubes.
Here is a proof of Euler's formula in the plane and on a sphere together with projects to explore cases of the formula for a polygon with holes, for the torus and other solids with holes and the. . . .
This follows up the 'magic Squares for Special Occasions' article which tells you you to create a 4by4 magicsquare with a special date on the top line using no negative numbers and no repeats.
Suppose A always beats B and B always beats C, then would you
expect A to beat C? Not always! What seems obvious is not always
true. Results always need to be proved in mathematics.
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and
We continue the discussion given in Euclid's Algorithm I, and here we shall discover when an equation of the form ax+by=c has no solutions, and when it has infinitely many solutions.
Peter Zimmerman from Mill Hill County High School in Barnet, London
gives a neat proof that: 5^(2n+1) + 11^(2n+1) + 17^(2n+1) is
divisible by 33 for every non negative integer n.
In this 7-sandwich: 7 1 3 1 6 4 3 5 7 2 4 6 2 5 there are 7 numbers between the 7s, 6 between the 6s etc. The article shows which values of n can make n-sandwiches and which cannot.
Tom writes about expressing numbers as the sums of three squares.
This article discusses how every Pythagorean triple (a, b, c) can be illustrated by a square and an L shape within another square. You are invited to find some triples for yourself.
This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.
When if ever do you get the right answer if you add two fractions
by adding the numerators and adding the denominators?
The first of five articles concentrating on whole number dynamics, ideas of general dynamical systems are introduced and seen in concrete cases.
This article extends the discussions in "Whole number dynamics I". Continuing the proof that, for all starting points, the Happy Number sequence goes into a loop or homes in on a fixed point.
Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.
The first of two articles on Pythagorean Triples which asks how many right angled triangles can you find with the lengths of each side exactly a whole number measurement. Try it!
It is impossible to trisect an angle using only ruler and compasses
but it can be done using a carpenter's square.
Take any prime number greater than 3 , square it and subtract one.
Working on the building blocks will help you to explain what is
special about your results.
A point moves around inside a rectangle. What are the least and the
greatest values of the sum of the squares of the distances from the
In this third of five articles we prove that whatever whole number we start with for the Happy Number sequence we will always end up with some set of numbers being repeated over and over again.
This article looks at knight's moves on a chess board and introduces you to the idea of vectors and vector addition.
Imagine two identical cylindrical pipes meeting at right angles and think about the shape of the space which belongs to both pipes. Early Chinese mathematicians call this shape the mouhefanggai.
An article which gives an account of some properties of magic squares.
Take a number, add its digits then multiply the digits together,
then multiply these two results. If you get the same number it is
an SP number.
Solve this famous unsolved problem and win a prize. Take a positive
integer N. If even, divide by 2; if odd, multiply by 3 and add 1.
Iterate. Prove that the sequence always goes to 4,2,1,4,2,1...
Professor Korner has generously supported school mathematics for more than 30 years and has been a good friend to NRICH since it started.
Start with any whole number N, write N as a multiple of 10 plus a remainder R and produce a new whole number N'. Repeat. What happens?