A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify predictions.
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
Place the 16 different combinations of cup/saucer in this 4 by 4 arrangement so that no row or column contains more than one cup or saucer of the same colour.
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square tiles of different sizes?
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?
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?
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can you investigate patios of different sizes?
Use the interactivity to find all the different right-angled triangles you can make by just moving one corner of the starting triangle.
This challenge extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.
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.
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.
We need to wrap up this cube-shaped present, remembering that we can have no overlaps. What shapes can you find to use?
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.
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?
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?
What happens to the area of a square if you double the length of the sides? Try the same thing with rectangles, diamonds and other shapes. How do the four smaller ones fit into the larger one?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.
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!
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
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?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
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?
A challenging activity focusing on finding all possible ways of stacking rods.
An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.
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?
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?
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?
Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.
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?
Explore one of these five pictures.
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
What is the largest number of circles we can fit into the frame without them overlapping? How do you know? What will happen if you try the other shapes?
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?
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
I cut this square into two different shapes. What can you say about the relationship between them?
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?
This challenge involves calculating the number of candles needed on birthday cakes. It is an opportunity to explore numbers and discover new things.
What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that you cannot fit another that's the same into it?
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
How many tiles do we need to tile these patios?
Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
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?
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?
Let's suppose that you are going to have a magazine which has 16 pages of A5 size. Can you find some different ways to make these pages? Investigate the pattern for each if you number the pages.
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?
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?
This practical investigation invites you to make tessellating shapes in a similar way to the artist Escher.