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Resources tagged with Mathematical reasoning & proof similar to Big, Bigger, Biggest:

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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Mathematical reasoning & proof

Big, Bigger, Biggest

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Which is the biggest and which the smallest of $2000^{2002}, 2001^{2001} \text{and } 2002^{2000}$?

A Biggy

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Find the smallest positive integer N such that N/2 is a perfect cube, N/3 is a perfect fifth power and N/5 is a perfect seventh power.

Sums of Squares and Sums of Cubes

Stage: 5

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.

More Sums of Squares

Stage: 5

Tom writes about expressing numbers as the sums of three squares.

Modulus Arithmetic and a Solution to Dirisibly Yours

Stage: 5

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.

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Four jewellers share their stock. Can you work out the relative values of their gems?

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Find all real solutions of the equation (x^2-7x+11)^(x^2-11x+30) = 1.

How Many Solutions?

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Find all the solutions to the this equation.

Pythagorean Triples II

Stage: 3 and 4

This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.

Proof of Pick's Theorem

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.

Pythagorean Triples I

Stage: 3 and 4

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!

Pythagoras Proofs

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Can you make sense of these three proofs of Pythagoras' Theorem?

Rational Roots

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

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 variables.

Whole Number Dynamics I

Stage: 4 and 5

The first of five articles concentrating on whole number dynamics, ideas of general dynamical systems are introduced and seen in concrete cases.

Whole Number Dynamics II

Stage: 4 and 5

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.

Telescoping Functions

Stage: 5

Take a complicated fraction with the product of five quartics top and bottom and reduce this to a whole number. This is a numerical example involving some clever algebra.

Where Do We Get Our Feet Wet?

Stage: 5

Professor Korner has generously supported school mathematics for more than 30 years and has been a good friend to NRICH since it started.

Whole Number Dynamics V

Stage: 4 and 5

The final of five articles which containe the proof of why the sequence introduced in article IV either reaches the fixed point 0 or the sequence enters a repeating cycle of four values.

Whole Number Dynamics IV

Stage: 4 and 5

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?

Whole Number Dynamics III

Stage: 4 and 5

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.

A Knight's Journey

Stage: 4 and 5

This article looks at knight's moves on a chess board and introduces you to the idea of vectors and vector addition.

Angle Trisection

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

It is impossible to trisect an angle using only ruler and compasses but it can be done using a carpenter's square.

Postage

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

The country Sixtania prints postage stamps with only three values 6 lucres, 10 lucres and 15 lucres (where the currency is in lucres).Which values cannot be made up with combinations of these postage. . . .

Prime AP

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

What can you say about the common difference of an AP where every term is prime?

Target Six

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Show that x = 1 is a solution of the equation x^(3/2) - 8x^(-3/2) = 7 and find all other solutions.

Shape and Territory

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

If for any triangle ABC tan(A - B) + tan(B - C) + tan(C - A) = 0 what can you say about the triangle?

Breaking the Equation ' Empirical Argument = Proof '

Stage: 2, 3, 4 and 5

This article stems from research on the teaching of proof and offers guidance on how to move learners from focussing on experimental arguments to mathematical arguments and deductive reasoning.

Long Short

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

What can you say about the lengths of the sides of a quadrilateral whose vertices are on a unit circle?

Three Ways

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

If x + y = -1 find the largest value of xy by coordinate geometry, by calculus and by algebra.

Pair Squares

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

The sum of any two of the numbers 2, 34 and 47 is a perfect square. Choose three square numbers and find sets of three integers with this property. Generalise to four integers.

Polite Numbers

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

A polite number can be written as the sum of two or more consecutive positive integers. Find the consecutive sums giving the polite numbers 544 and 424. What characterizes impolite numbers?

Magic W Wrap Up

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Prove that you cannot form a Magic W with a total of 12 or less or with a with a total of 18 or more.

Try to Win

Stage: 5

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...

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Find all positive integers a and b for which the two equations: x^2-ax+b = 0 and x^2-bx+a = 0 both have positive integer solutions.

Mechanical Integration

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

To find the integral of a polynomial, evaluate it at some special points and add multiples of these values.

Always Perfect

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Show that if you add 1 to the product of four consecutive numbers the answer is ALWAYS a perfect square.

Notty Logic

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Have a go at being mathematically negative, by negating these statements.

Modular Fractions

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

We only need 7 numbers for modulus (or clock) arithmetic mod 7 including working with fractions. Explore how to divide numbers and write fractions in modulus arithemtic.

Yih or Luk Tsut K'i or Three Men's Morris

Stage: 3, 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Iffy Logic

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Can you rearrange the cards to make a series of correct mathematical statements?

The Great Weights Puzzle

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

You have twelve weights, one of which is different from the rest. Using just 3 weighings, can you identify which weight is the odd one out, and whether it is heavier or lighter than the rest?

Pareq Exists

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Prove that, given any three parallel lines, an equilateral triangle always exists with one vertex on each of the three lines.

Composite Notions

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

A composite number is one that is neither prime nor 1. Show that 10201 is composite in any base.

Stage: 5 Short Challenge Level:

Sort these mathematical propositions into a series of 8 correct statements.

Mediant

Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

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.

Direct Logic

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Can you work through these direct proofs, using our interactive proof sorters?

Unit Interval

Stage: 4 and 5 Challenge Level:

Take any two numbers between 0 and 1. Prove that the sum of the numbers is always less than one plus their product?

Binary Sequences

Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Show that the infinite set of finite (or terminating) binary sequences can be written as an ordered list whereas the infinite set of all infinite binary sequences cannot.

Sprouts Explained

Stage: 2, 3, 4 and 5

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. . . .