Investigate sequences given by $a_n = \frac{1+a_{n-1}}{a_{n-2}}$ for different choices of the first two terms. Make a conjecture about the behaviour of these sequences. Can you prove your conjecture?

It starts quite simple but great opportunities for number discoveries and patterns!

An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.

To avoid losing think of another very well known game where the patterns of play are similar.

Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single pile. The loser is the player who takes the last counter.

Show that for any triangle it is always possible to construct 3 touching circles with centres at the vertices. Is it possible to construct touching circles centred at the vertices of any polygon?

A game for 2 players with similaritlies to NIM. Place one counter on each spot on the games board. Players take it is turns to remove 1 or 2 adjacent counters. The winner picks up the last counter.

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

A game for 2 players. Set out 16 counters in rows of 1,3,5 and 7. Players take turns to remove any number of counters from a row. The player left with the last counter looses.

This article for teachers describes several games, found on the site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to develop the skills of strategic planning.

First of all, pick the number of times a week that you would like to eat chocolate. Multiply this number by 2...

Pick a square within a multiplication square and add the numbers on each diagonal. What do you notice?

Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single pile. The winner is the player to take the last counter.

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?

The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of moves.

Can you find the values at the vertices when you know the values on the edges of these multiplication arithmagons?

Triangle numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?

Charlie has made a Magic V. Can you use his example to make some more? And how about Magic Ls, Ns and Ws?

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

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

Spotting patterns can be an important first step - explaining why it is appropriate to generalise is the next step, and often the most interesting and important.

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?

What are the areas of these triangles? What do you notice? Can you generalise to other "families" of triangles?

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.

Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?

Can you describe this route to infinity? Where will the arrows take you next?

Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?

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?

Imagine an infinitely large sheet of square dotty paper on which you can draw triangles of any size you wish (providing each vertex is on a dot). What areas is it/is it not possible to draw?

List any 3 numbers. It is always possible to find a subset of adjacent numbers that add up to a multiple of 3. Can you explain why and prove it?

Can you find sets of sloping lines that enclose a square?

Consider all two digit numbers (10, 11, . . . ,99). In writing down all these numbers, which digits occur least often, and which occur most often ? What about three digit numbers, four digit numbers. . . .

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

Take any two positive numbers. Calculate the arithmetic and geometric means. Repeat the calculations to generate a sequence of arithmetic means and geometric means. Make a note of what happens to the. . . .

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. . . .

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

It would be nice to have a strategy for disentangling any tangled ropes...

Choose a couple of the sequences. Try to picture how to make the next, and the next, and the next... Can you describe your reasoning?

Can you find the values at the vertices when you know the values on the edges?

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

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

A package contains a set of resources designed to develop pupils’ mathematical thinking. This package places a particular emphasis on “generalising” and is designed to meet the. . . .

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?

Jo has three numbers which she adds together in pairs. When she does this she has three different totals: 11, 17 and 22 What are the three numbers Jo had to start with?”

What size square corners should be cut from a square piece of paper to make a box with the largest possible volume?

Can you find an efficient method to work out how many handshakes there would be if hundreds of people met?