A cheap and simple toy with lots of mathematics. Can you interpret the images that are produced? Can you predict the pattern that will be produced using different wheels?
Find the ratio of the outer shaded area to the inner area for a six pointed star and an eight pointed star.
The centre of the larger circle is at the midpoint of one side of an equilateral triangle and the circle touches the other two sides of the triangle. A smaller circle touches the larger circle and. . . .
A circle rolls around the outside edge of a square so that its circumference always touches the edge of the square. Can you describe the locus of the centre of the circle?
Points A, B and C are the centres of three circles, each one of which touches the other two. Prove that the perimeter of the triangle ABC is equal to the diameter of the largest circle.
Explain how the thirteen pieces making up the regular hexagon shown in the diagram can be re-assembled to form three smaller regular hexagons congruent to each other.
A white cross is placed symmetrically in a red disc with the central square of side length sqrt 2 and the arms of the cross of length 1 unit. What is the area of the disc still showing?
See if you can anticipate successive 'generations' of the two animals shown here.
An environment that enables you to investigate tessellations of regular polygons
Which is a better fit, a square peg in a round hole or a round peg in a square hole?
A metal puzzle which led to some mathematical questions.
Shogi tiles can form interesting shapes and patterns... I wonder whether they fit together to make a ring?
Follow instructions to fold sheets of A4 paper into pentagons and assemble them to form a dodecahedron. Calculate the error in the angle of the not perfectly regular pentagons you make.
Have a go at creating these images based on circles. What do you notice about the areas of the different sections?
Given a square ABCD of sides 10 cm, and using the corners as centres, construct four quadrants with radius 10 cm each inside the square. The four arcs intersect at P, Q, R and S. Find the. . . .
What is the same and what is different about these circle questions? What connections can you make?
How efficiently can you pack together disks?
Make five different quadrilaterals on a nine-point pegboard, without using the centre peg. Work out the angles in each quadrilateral you make. Now, what other relationships you can see?
The sides of a triangle are 25, 39 and 40 units of length. Find the diameter of the circumscribed circle.
Two circles are enclosed by a rectangle 12 units by x units. The distance between the centres of the two circles is x/3 units. How big is x?
Bluey-green, white and transparent squares with a few odd bits of shapes around the perimeter. But, how many squares are there of each type in the complete circle? Study the picture and make. . . .
Equal circles can be arranged so that each circle touches four or six others. What percentage of the plane is covered by circles in each packing pattern? ...
This article for pupils gives some examples of how circles have featured in people's lives for centuries.
Given a 2 by 2 by 2 skeletal cube with one route `down' the cube. How many routes are there from A to B?
Two semi-circles (each of radius 1/2) touch each other, and a semi-circle of radius 1 touches both of them. Find the radius of the circle which touches all three semi-circles.
A floor is covered by a tessellation of equilateral triangles, each having three equal arcs inside it. What proportion of the area of the tessellation is shaded?
Three circles have a maximum of six intersections with each other. What is the maximum number of intersections that a hundred circles could have?
The ten arcs forming the edges of the "holly leaf" are all arcs of circles of radius 1 cm. Find the length of the perimeter of the holly leaf and the area of its surface.
M is any point on the line AB. Squares of side length AM and MB are constructed and their circumcircles intersect at P (and M). Prove that the lines AD and BE produced pass through P.
At the corner of the cube circular arcs are drawn and the area enclosed shaded. What fraction of the surface area of the cube is shaded? Try working out the answer without recourse to pencil and. . . .
Find the area of the annulus in terms of the length of the chord which is tangent to the inner circle.
A square of area 40 square cms is inscribed in a semicircle. Find the area of the square that could be inscribed in a circle of the same radius.
A circle touches the lines OA, OB and AB where OA and OB are perpendicular. Show that the diameter of the circle is equal to the perimeter of the triangle
A blue coin rolls round two yellow coins which touch. The coins are the same size. How many revolutions does the blue coin make when it rolls all the way round the yellow coins? Investigate for a. . . .
Investigate the properties of quadrilaterals which can be drawn with a circle just touching each side and another circle just touching each vertex.
Straight lines are drawn from each corner of a square to the mid points of the opposite sides. Express the area of the octagon that is formed at the centre as a fraction of the area of the square.
Can you reproduce the design comprising a series of concentric circles? Test your understanding of the realtionship betwwn the circumference and diameter of a circle.
Medieval stonemasons used a method to construct octagons using ruler and compasses... Is the octagon regular? Proof please.
Take a look at the photos of tiles at a school in Gibraltar. What questions can you ask about them?
By inscribing a circle in a square and then a square in a circle find an approximation to pi. By using a hexagon, can you improve on the approximation?
Show that for any triangle it is always possible to construct 3 touching circles with centres at the vertices. Is it possible to construct touching circles centred at the vertices of any polygon?
The largest square which fits into a circle is ABCD and EFGH is a square with G and H on the line CD and E and F on the circumference of the circle. Show that AB = 5EF. Similarly the largest. . . .
This shape comprises four semi-circles. What is the relationship between the area of the shaded region and the area of the circle on AB as diameter?
If you continue the pattern, can you predict what each of the following areas will be? Try to explain your prediction.
A very mathematical light - what can you see?
What fractions of the largest circle are the two shaded regions?
Two polygons fit together so that the exterior angle at each end of their shared side is 81 degrees. If both shapes now have to be regular could the angle still be 81 degrees?
Recreating the designs in this challenge requires you to break a problem down into manageable chunks and use the relationships between triangles and hexagons. An exercise in detail and elegance.
An equilateral triangle is sitting on top of a square. What is the radius of the circle that circumscribes this shape?
Semicircles are drawn on the sides of a rectangle. Prove that the sum of the areas of the four crescents is equal to the area of the rectangle.