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Make a cube out of straws and have a go at this practical challenge.


Reasoning about the number of matches needed to build squares that share their sides.

Little Boxes

How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or DVDs? How about using five, then six?

World of Tan 3 - Mah Ling

Age 7 to 11
Challenge Level

This activity follows on from World of Tan 2 - Little Ming.

Good morning, this is Granma T's Removals, Mah Ling speaking. How can I help you?

Oh! You want to know who I am? I'm the personal assistant to Granma T. I run her office, make all the necessary arrangements, manage the workers and do all the accounts. I also keep an eye on those two mischievous scamps, Little Ming and Little Fung, though they are not so little any more!

How old am I? Well, I'm more than three times the age of Little Ming, but I'm the second oldest person here. Numerically, my age is one more than a prime number. My age has eight divisors and three prime factors. So there!

Anyway, that's enough about me. I'll get Granma T to speak to you... please hold...

In the meantime, complete the silhouette of Mah Ling.

Extra activity:
  • Use the information in the story to work out how old Mah Ling is.

The story continues in World of Tan 4 - Monday Morning.