Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify predictions.
A thoughtful shepherd used bales of straw to protect the area around his lambs. Explore how you can arrange the bales.
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?
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?
Use the interactivity to find all the different right-angled triangles you can make by just moving one corner of the starting triangle.
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?
When newspaper pages get separated at home we have to try to sort them out and get things in the correct order. How many ways can we arrange these pages so that the numbering may be different?
Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?
Ben has five coins in his pocket. How much money might he have?
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square tiles of different sizes?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.
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!
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?
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?
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?
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can you investigate patios of different sizes?
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.
If you have three circular objects, you could arrange them so that they are separate, touching, overlapping or inside each other. Can you investigate all the different possibilities?
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?
Three children are going to buy some plants for their birthdays. They will plant them within circular paths. How could they do this?
We can arrange dots in a similar way to the 5 on a dice and they usually sit quite well into a rectangular shape. How many altogether in this 3 by 5? What happens for other sizes?
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?
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
Place this "worm" on the 100 square and find the total of the four squares it covers. Keeping its head in the same place, what other totals can you make?
Compare the numbers of particular tiles in one or all of these three designs, inspired by the floor tiles of a church in Cambridge.
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
The challenge here is to find as many routes as you can for a fence to go so that this town is divided up into two halves, each with 8 blocks.
Start with four numbers at the corners of a square and put the total of two corners in the middle of that side. Keep going... Can you estimate what the size of the last four numbers will be?
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?
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
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?
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street in different ways.
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
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?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
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?
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?
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?
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?
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 extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.
Explore one of these five pictures.
How many tiles do we need to tile these patios?
In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?
This challenge encourages you to explore dividing a three-digit number by a single-digit number.
This challenge asks you to investigate the total number of cards that would be sent if four children send one to all three others. How many would be sent if there were five children? Six?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.
How many models can you find which obey these rules?