If these balls are put on a line with each ball touching the one in front and the one behind, which arrangement makes the shortest line of balls?
Can you cut a regular hexagon into two pieces to make a parallelogram? Try cutting it into three pieces to make a rhombus!
Are all the possible combinations of two shapes included in this set of 27 cards? How do you know?
What shape is made when you fold using this crease pattern? Can you make a ring design?
This was a problem for our birthday website. Can you use four of these pieces to form a square? How about making a square with all five pieces?
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?
Take a rectangle of paper and fold it in half, and half again, to make four smaller rectangles. How many different ways can you fold it up?
This practical investigation invites you to make tessellating shapes in a similar way to the artist Escher.
Our 2008 Advent Calendar has a 'Making Maths' activity for every day in the run-up to Christmas.
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
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?
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?
Can you make the most extraordinary, the most amazing, the most unusual patterns/designs from these triangles which are made in a special way?
NRICH December 2006 advent calendar - a new tangram for each day in the run-up to Christmas.
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
In this challenge, you will work in a group to investigate circular fences enclosing trees that are planted in square or triangular arrangements.
In how many ways can you fit two of these yellow triangles together? Can you predict the number of ways two blue triangles can be fitted together?
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
We went to the cinema and decided to buy some bags of popcorn so we asked about the prices. Investigate how much popcorn each bag holds so find out which we might have bought.
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?
Here are some ideas to try in the classroom for using counters to investigate number patterns.
A group of children are discussing the height of a tall tree. How would you go about finding out its height?
Can you recreate this Indian screen pattern? Can you make up similar patterns of your own?
Take a counter and surround it by a ring of other counters that MUST touch two others. How many are needed?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Wai Ping, Wah Ming and Chi Wing?
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?
This practical problem challenges you to create shapes and patterns with two different types of triangle. You could even try overlapping them.
Follow the diagrams to make this patchwork piece, based on an octagon in a square.
This practical activity involves measuring length/distance.
Kaia is sure that her father has worn a particular tie twice a week in at least five of the last ten weeks, but her father disagrees. Who do you think is right?
Factors and Multiples game for an adult and child. How can you make sure you win this game?
Arrange your fences to make the largest rectangular space you can. Try with four fences, then five, then six etc.
Looking at the picture of this Jomista Mat, can you decribe what you see? Why not try and make one yourself?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this telephone?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the lobster, yacht and cyclist?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of the child walking home from school?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the chairs?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this shape. How would you describe it?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of Mai Ling and Chi Wing?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these clocks?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of these people?
How do you know if your set of dominoes is complete?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming playing the board game?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Fung at the table?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this brazier for roasting chestnuts?
Have a go at drawing these stars which use six points drawn around a circle. Perhaps you can create your own designs?
You have been given three shapes made out of sponge: a sphere, a cylinder and a cone. Your challenge is to find out how to cut them to make different shapes for printing.
Can you visualise what shape this piece of paper will make when it is folded?
For this task, you'll need an A4 sheet and two A5 transparent sheets. Decide on a way of arranging the A5 sheets on top of the A4 sheet and explore ...
Make a flower design using the same shape made out of different sizes of paper.