On a clock the three hands - the second, minute and hour hands - are on the same axis. How often in a 24 hour day will the second hand be parallel to either of the two other hands?
Is it possible to rearrange the numbers 1,2......12 around a clock face in such a way that every two numbers in adjacent positions differ by any of 3, 4 or 5 hours?
At the time of writing the hour and minute hands of my clock are at right angles. How long will it be before they are at right angles again?
A tetromino is made up of four squares joined edge to edge. Can this tetromino, together with 15 copies of itself, be used to cover an eight by eight chessboard?
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?
Anne completes a circuit around a circular track in 40 seconds. Brenda runs in the opposite direction and meets Anne every 15 seconds. How long does it take Brenda to run around the track?
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
A dog is looking for a good place to bury his bone. Can you work out where he started and ended in each case? What possible routes could he have taken?
An irregular tetrahedron is composed of four different triangles. Can such a tetrahedron be constructed where the side lengths are 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 units of length?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, involves open-topped boxes made with interlocking cubes. Explore the number of units of paint that are needed to cover the boxes. . . .
How can you arrange the 5 cubes so that you need the smallest number of Brush Loads of paint to cover them? Try with other numbers of cubes as well.
A bus route has a total duration of 40 minutes. Every 10 minutes, two buses set out, one from each end. How many buses will one bus meet on its way from one end to the other end?
In a square in which the houses are evenly spaced, numbers 3 and 10 are opposite each other. What is the smallest and what is the largest possible number of houses in the square?
Hover your mouse over the counters to see which ones will be removed. Click to remove them. The winner is the last one to remove a counter. How you can make sure you win?
You have 4 red and 5 blue counters. How many ways can they be placed on a 3 by 3 grid so that all the rows columns and diagonals have an even number of red counters?
Can you shunt the trucks so that the Cattle truck and the Sheep truck change places and the Engine is back on the main line?
What is the best way to shunt these carriages so that each train can continue its journey?
Swap the stars with the moons, using only knights' moves (as on a chess board). What is the smallest number of moves possible?
10 space travellers are waiting to board their spaceships. There are two rows of seats in the waiting room. Using the rules, where are they all sitting? Can you find all the possible ways?
How many DIFFERENT quadrilaterals can be made by joining the dots on the 8-point circle?
This article for teachers describes how modelling number properties involving multiplication using an array of objects not only allows children to represent their thinking with concrete materials,. . . .
Every day at noon a boat leaves Le Havre for New York while another boat leaves New York for Le Havre. The ocean crossing takes seven days. How many boats will each boat cross during their journey?
We start with one yellow cube and build around it to make a 3x3x3 cube with red cubes. Then we build around that red cube with blue cubes and so on. How many cubes of each colour have we used?
This 100 square jigsaw is written in code. It starts with 1 and ends with 100. Can you build it up?
I found these clocks in the Arts Centre at the University of Warwick intriguing - do they really need four clocks and what times would be ambiguous with only two or three of them?
What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that you cannot fit another that's the same into it?
Here are some arrangements of circles. How many circles would I need to make the next size up for each? Can you create your own arrangement and investigate the number of circles it needs?
A train leaves on time. After it has gone 8 miles (at 33mph) the driver looks at his watch and sees that the hour hand is exactly over the minute hand. When did the train leave the station?
Building up a simple Celtic knot. Try the interactivity or download the cards or have a go on squared paper.
Can you make a 3x3 cube with these shapes made from small cubes?
What is the greatest number of counters you can place on the grid below without four of them lying at the corners of a square?
Cut four triangles from a square as shown in the picture. How many different shapes can you make by fitting the four triangles back together?
Here you see the front and back views of a dodecahedron. Each vertex has been numbered so that the numbers around each pentagonal face add up to 65. Can you find all the missing numbers?
Can you work out how many cubes were used to make this open box? What size of open box could you make if you had 112 cubes?
Design an arrangement of display boards in the school hall which fits the requirements of different people.
How many different triangles can you make on a circular pegboard that has nine pegs?
When I fold a 0-20 number line, I end up with 'stacks' of numbers on top of each other. These challenges involve varying the length of the number line and investigating the 'stack totals'.
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?
How will you go about finding all the jigsaw pieces that have one peg and one hole?
A magician took a suit of thirteen cards and held them in his hand face down. Every card he revealed had the same value as the one he had just finished spelling. How did this work?
Can you see why 2 by 2 could be 5? Can you predict what 2 by 10 will be?
Join pentagons together edge to edge. Will they form a ring?
Which hexagons tessellate?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of this goat and giraffe?
Find a cuboid (with edges of integer values) that has a surface area of exactly 100 square units. Is there more than one? Can you find them all?
What happens when you turn these cogs? Investigate the differences between turning two cogs of different sizes and two cogs which are the same.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of these convex shapes?
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outline of Little Ming and Little Fung dancing?
This article looks at levels of geometric thinking and the types of activities required to develop this thinking.
Can you fit the tangram pieces into the outlines of the workmen?