Can you visualise whether these nets fold up into 3D shapes? Watch the videos each time to see if you were correct.
A cube is made from smaller cubes, 5 by 5 by 5, then some of those cubes are removed. Can you make the specified shapes, and what is the most and least number of cubes required ?
A useful visualising exercise which offers opportunities for discussion and generalising, and which could be used for thinking about the formulae needed for generating the results on a spreadsheet.
The second in a series of articles on visualising and modelling shapes in the history of astronomy.
In the game of Noughts and Crosses there are 8 distinct winning lines. How many distinct winning lines are there in a game played on a 3 by 3 by 3 board, with 27 cells?
This article explores ths history of theories about the shape of our planet. It is the first in a series of articles looking at the significance of geometric shapes in the history of astronomy.
A half-cube is cut into two pieces by a plane through the long diagonal and at right angles to it. Can you draw a net of these pieces? Are they identical?
The image in this problem is part of a piece of equipment found in the playground of a school. How would you describe it to someone over the phone?
An introduction to bond angle geometry.
What 3D shapes occur in nature. How efficiently can you pack these shapes together?
Which of the following cubes can be made from these nets?
What is the shape of wrapping paper that you would need to completely wrap this model?
A bicycle passes along a path and leaves some tracks. Is it possible to say which track was made by the front wheel and which by the back wheel?
Can you recreate these designs? What are the basic units? What movement is required between each unit? Some elegant use of procedures will help - variables not essential.
Is it possible to remove ten unit cubes from a 3 by 3 by 3 cube made from 27 unit cubes so that the surface area of the remaining solid is the same as the surface area of the original 3 by 3 by 3. . . .
Find all the ways to cut out a 'net' of six squares that can be folded into a cube.
This is the first article in a series which aim to provide some insight into the way spatial thinking develops in children, and draw on a range of reported research. The focus of this article is the. . . .
This problem is about investigating whether it is possible to start at one vertex of a platonic solid and visit every other vertex once only returning to the vertex you started at.
See if you can anticipate successive 'generations' of the two animals shown here.
A 3x3x3 cube may be reduced to unit cubes in six saw cuts. If after every cut you can rearrange the pieces before cutting straight through, can you do it in fewer?
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
This is an interactive net of a Rubik's cube. Twists of the 3D cube become mixes of the squares on the 2D net. Have a play and see how many scrambles you can undo!
Imagine you are suspending a cube from one vertex (corner) and allowing it to hang freely. Now imagine you are lowering it into water until it is exactly half submerged. What shape does the surface. . . .
Mike and Monisha meet at the race track, which is 400m round. Just to make a point, Mike runs anticlockwise whilst Monisha runs clockwise. Where will they meet on their way around and will they ever. . . .
These are pictures of the sea defences at New Brighton. Can you work out what a basic shape might be in both images of the sea wall and work out a way they might fit together?
This is a simple version of an ancient game played all over the world. It is also called Mancala. What tactics will increase your chances of winning?
A visualisation problem in which you search for vectors which sum to zero from a jumble of arrows. Will your eyes be quicker than algebra?
Can you make a tetrahedron whose faces all have the same perimeter?
Glarsynost lives on a planet whose shape is that of a perfect regular dodecahedron. Can you describe the shortest journey she can make to ensure that she will see every part of the planet?
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?
Imagine a stack of numbered cards with one on top. Discard the top, put the next card to the bottom and repeat continuously. Can you predict the last card?
Can you mentally fit the 7 SOMA pieces together to make a cube? Can you do it in more than one way?
Discover a way to sum square numbers by building cuboids from small cubes. Can you picture how the sequence will grow?
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and reasoning to agree a final product.
A circular plate rolls in contact with the sides of a rectangular tray. How much of its circumference comes into contact with the sides of the tray when it rolls around one circuit?
Can you use small coloured cubes to make a 3 by 3 by 3 cube so that each face of the bigger cube contains one of each colour?
What can you see? What do you notice? What questions can you ask?
How efficiently can you pack together disks?
Can you maximise the area available to a grazing goat?
If you move the tiles around, can you make squares with different coloured edges?
A game for 2 players
Imagine a large cube made from small red cubes being dropped into a pot of yellow paint. How many of the small cubes will have yellow paint on their faces?
A ribbon runs around a box so that it makes a complete loop with two parallel pieces of ribbon on the top. How long will the ribbon be?
This article for teachers discusses examples of problems in which there is no obvious method but in which children can be encouraged to think deeply about the context and extend their ability to. . . .
Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?
An irregular tetrahedron has two opposite sides the same length a and the line joining their midpoints is perpendicular to these two edges and is of length b. What is the volume of the tetrahedron?
A spider is sitting in the middle of one of the smallest walls in a room and a fly is resting beside the window. What is the shortest distance the spider would have to crawl to catch the fly?
Triangle numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?
There are 27 small cubes in a 3 x 3 x 3 cube, 54 faces being visible at any one time. Is it possible to reorganise these cubes so that by dipping the large cube into a pot of paint three times you. . . .
Place a red counter in the top left corner of a 4x4 array, which is covered by 14 other smaller counters, leaving a gap in the bottom right hand corner (HOME). What is the smallest number of moves. . . .