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Clock Hands

This investigation explores using different shapes as the hands of the clock. What things occur as the the hands move.


Investigate the different shaped bracelets you could make from 18 different spherical beads. How do they compare if you use 24 beads?

Sweets in a Box

How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same colour are next to each other in any direction?

Overlapping Circles

Age 7 to 11
Challenge Level

Overlapping Circles


What shaped overlaps can you make with two same-sized circles?

What shapes are 'left over'?

Overlapping Circles

What shapes can you make when the circles are different sizes?

What happens when you use more than two circles?

Using circles cut from tissue paper will make the overlap easy to see.

They also look good displayed on the window against the light because the overlap comes out a different colour.

Asking pupils to move the circles over one another gradually will help them to see the possibilities clearly.

As names of shapes are not required, this activity provides a chance to encourage careful description using appropriate language.

This is a good opportunity to talk about the symmetry of circles too.