Prove that the product of the sum of n positive numbers with the sum of their reciprocals is not less than n^2.
Find all the solutions to the this equation.
Attach weights of 1, 2, 4, and 8 units to the four attachment points on the bar. Move the bar from side to side until you find a balance point. Is it possible to predict that position?
The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect square - can you explain why?
Let S1 = 1 , S2 = 2 + 3, S3 = 4 + 5 + 6 ,........ Calculate S17.
If a two digit number has its digits reversed and the smaller of the two numbers is subtracted from the larger, prove the difference can never be prime.
Balance the bar with the three weight on the inside.
Pick a square within a multiplication square and add the numbers on each diagonal. What do you notice?
Take a few whole numbers away from a triangle number. If you know the mean of the remaining numbers can you find the triangle number and which numbers were removed?
If x + y = -1 find the largest value of xy by coordinate geometry, by calculus and by algebra.
Five equations... five unknowns... can you solve the system?
This article explains how to make your own magic square to mark a special occasion with the special date of your choice on the top line.
Charlie likes tablecloths that use as many colours as possible, but insists that his tablecloths have some symmetry. Can you work out how many colours he needs for different tablecloth designs?
Given a set of points (x,y) with distinct x values, find a polynomial that goes through all of them, then prove some results about the existence and uniqueness of these polynomials.
Show that if you add 1 to the product of four consecutive numbers the answer is ALWAYS a perfect square.
Can you explain why a sequence of operations always gives you perfect squares?
Prove that 3 times the sum of 3 squares is the sum of 4 squares. Rather easier, can you prove that twice the sum of two squares always gives the sum of two squares?
There is a particular value of x, and a value of y to go with it, which make all five expressions equal in value, can you find that x, y pair ?
How good are you at finding the formula for a number pattern ?
Take any two numbers between 0 and 1. Prove that the sum of the numbers is always less than one plus their product?
A circle of radius r touches two sides of a right angled triangle, sides x and y, and has its centre on the hypotenuse. Can you prove the formula linking x, y and r?
Manufacturers need to minimise the amount of material used to make their product. What is the best cross-section for a gutter?
What would you get if you continued this sequence of fraction sums? 1/2 + 2/1 = 2/3 + 3/2 = 3/4 + 4/3 =
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.
My train left London between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. and arrived in Paris between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. At the start and end of the journey the hands on my watch were in exactly the same positions but the. . . .
Can you use the diagram to prove the AM-GM inequality?
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.
115^2 = (110 x 120) + 25, that is 13225 895^2 = (890 x 900) + 25, that is 801025 Can you explain what is happening and generalise?
Find the five distinct digits N, R, I, C and H in the following nomogram
Can you convince me of each of the following: If a square number is multiplied by a square number the product is ALWAYS a square number...
Brian swims at twice the speed that a river is flowing, downstream from one moored boat to another and back again, taking 12 minutes altogether. How long would it have taken him in still water?
Given an equilateral triangle inside an isosceles triangle, can you find a relationship between the angles?
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?
This pattern of six circles contains three unit circles. Work out the radii of the other three circles and the relationship between them.
Can you make sense of these three proofs of Pythagoras' Theorem?
Take a complicated fraction with the product of five quartics top and bottom and reduce this to a whole number. This is a numerical example involving some clever algebra.
By proving these particular identities, prove the existence of general cases.
Can you fit polynomials through these points?
Some students have been working out the number of strands needed for different sizes of cable. Can you make sense of their solutions?
A sequence of polynomials starts 0, 1 and each poly is given by combining the two polys in the sequence just before it. Investigate and prove results about the roots of the polys.
The heptathlon is an athletics competition consisting of 7 events. Can you make sense of the scoring system in order to advise a heptathlete on the best way to reach her target?
Robert noticed some interesting patterns when he highlighted square numbers in a spreadsheet. Can you prove that the patterns will continue?
An algebra task which depends on members of the group noticing the needs of others and responding.
Given any two polynomials in a single variable it is always possible to eliminate the variable and obtain a formula showing the relationship between the two polynomials. Try this one.
Choose four consecutive whole numbers. Multiply the first and last numbers together. Multiply the middle pair together. What do you notice?
A task which depends on members of the group noticing the needs of others and responding.
By considering powers of (1+x), show that the sum of the squares of the binomial coefficients from 0 to n is 2nCn
Use algebra to reason why 16 and 32 are impossible to create as the sum of consecutive numbers.
How to build your own magic squares.
A moveable screen slides along a mirrored corridor towards a centrally placed light source. A ray of light from that source is directed towards a wall of the corridor, which it strikes at 45 degrees. . . .