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Resources tagged with Investigations similar to Encouraging Primary Children to Work Systematically:

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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Investigations

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Stacks of Maths!

Age 5 to 14

In this article for teachers, Bernard gives an example of taking an initial activity and getting questions going that lead to other explorations.

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Experiencing Problem Solving

Age 5 to 11

Bernard Bagnall looks at what 'problem solving' might really mean in the context of primary classrooms.

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Room Doubling

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.

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It Figures

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Suppose we allow ourselves to use three numbers less than 10 and multiply them together. How many different products can you find? How do you know you've got them all?

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Making Cuboids

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Let's say you can only use two different lengths - 2 units and 4 units. Using just these 2 lengths as the edges how many different cuboids can you make?

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Two on Five

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Take 5 cubes of one colour and 2 of another colour. How many different ways can you join them if the 5 must touch the table and the 2 must not touch the table?

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New House

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In this investigation, you must try to make houses using cubes. If the base must not spill over 4 squares and you have 7 cubes which stand for 7 rooms, what different designs can you come up with?

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The Pied Piper of Hamelin

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!

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Sweets in a Box

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

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Watch Your Feet

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

I like to walk along the cracks of the paving stones, but not the outside edge of the path itself. How many different routes can you find for me to take?

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Making Boxes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?

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Magic Constants

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In a Magic Square all the rows, columns and diagonals add to the 'Magic Constant'. How would you change the magic constant of this square?

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Fencing Lambs

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.

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Making Squares

Age 7 to 11

Investigate all the different squares you can make on this 5 by 5 grid by making your starting side go from the bottom left hand point. Can you find out the areas of all these squares?

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Polo Square

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.

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Stairs

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge is to design different step arrangements, which must go along a distance of 6 on the steps and must end up at 6 high.

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Christmas Presents

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

We need to wrap up this cube-shaped present, remembering that we can have no overlaps. What shapes can you find to use?

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Bean Bags for Bernard's Bag

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can you find all the ways of doing this?

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Calcunos

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?

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It's All about 64

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Write the numbers up to 64 in an interesting way so that the shape they make at the end is interesting, different, more exciting ... than just a square.

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Two by One

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.

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Sticky Triangles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?

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Polygonals

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.

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Three Sets of Cubes, Two Surfaces

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many models can you find which obey these rules?

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Sticks and Triangles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Using different numbers of sticks, how many different triangles are you able to make? Can you make any rules about the numbers of sticks that make the most triangles?

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More Children and Plants

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

This challenge extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.

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More Plant Spaces

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

This challenging activity involves finding different ways to distribute fifteen items among four sets, when the sets must include three, four, five and six items.

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Division Rules

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge encourages you to explore dividing a three-digit number by a single-digit number.

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Building with Rods

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?

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Crossing the Town Square

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.

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Hexpentas

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?

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Baked Bean Cans

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Is there a best way to stack cans? What do different supermarkets do? How high can you safely stack the cans?

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Cuboid-in-a-box

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that you cannot fit another that's the same into it?

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Tessellating Transformations

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you find out how the 6-triangle shape is transformed in these tessellations? Will the tessellations go on for ever? Why or why not?

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Tri.'s

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many triangles can you make on the 3 by 3 pegboard?

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All Wrapped Up

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the largest cuboid you can wrap in an A3 sheet of paper?

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Birthday Cake Candles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge involves calculating the number of candles needed on birthday cakes. It is an opportunity to explore numbers and discover new things.

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Cubes Here and There

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many shapes can you build from three red and two green cubes? Can you use what you've found out to predict the number for four red and two green?

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Tiling

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify predictions.

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My New Patio

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can you investigate patios of different sizes?

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Let's Investigate Triangles

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Vincent and Tara are making triangles with the class construction set. They have a pile of strips of different lengths. How many different triangles can they make?

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More Transformations on a Pegboard

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Use the interactivity to find all the different right-angled triangles you can make by just moving one corner of the starting triangle.

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Teddy Town

Age 5 to 14 Challenge Level:

There are nine teddies in Teddy Town - three red, three blue and three yellow. There are also nine houses, three of each colour. Can you put them on the map of Teddy Town according to the rules?

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Halloween Investigation

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Ana and Ross looked in a trunk in the attic. They found old cloaks and gowns, hats and masks. How many possible costumes could they make?

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Ice Cream

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

You cannot choose a selection of ice cream flavours that includes totally what someone has already chosen. Have a go and find all the different ways in which seven children can have ice cream.

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Train Carriages

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Suppose there is a train with 24 carriages which are going to be put together to make up some new trains. Can you find all the ways that this can be done?

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Lost Books

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

While we were sorting some papers we found 3 strange sheets which seemed to come from small books but there were page numbers at the foot of each page. Did the pages come from the same book?

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Five Coins

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Ben has five coins in his pocket. How much money might he have?

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Egyptian Rope

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

The ancient Egyptians were said to make right-angled triangles using a rope with twelve equal sections divided by knots. What other triangles could you make if you had a rope like this?

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Buying a Balloon

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?