Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
Baker, Cooper, Jones and Smith are four people whose occupations are teacher, welder, mechanic and programmer, but not necessarily in that order. What is each person’s occupation?
Draw some quadrilaterals on a 9-point circle and work out the angles. Is there a theorem?
This is the second of two articles and discusses problems relating to the curvature of space, shortest distances on surfaces, triangulations of surfaces and representation by graphs.
Some puzzles requiring no knowledge of knot theory, just a careful inspection of the patterns. A glimpse of the classification of knots and a little about prime knots, crossing numbers and. . . .
In how many distinct ways can six islands be joined by bridges so that each island can be reached from every other island...
In this 7-sandwich: 7 1 3 1 6 4 3 5 7 2 4 6 2 5 there are 7 numbers between the 7s, 6 between the 6s etc. The article shows which values of n can make n-sandwiches and which cannot.
This addition sum uses all ten digits 0, 1, 2...9 exactly once. Find the sum and show that the one you give is the only possibility.
This article invites you to get familiar with a strategic game called "sprouts". The game is simple enough for younger children to understand, and has also provided experienced mathematicians with. . . .
Replace each letter with a digit to make this addition correct.
Eight children enter the autumn cross-country race at school. How many possible ways could they come in at first, second and third places?
What does logic mean to us and is that different to mathematical logic? We will explore these questions in this article.
Carry out cyclic permutations of nine digit numbers containing the digits from 1 to 9 (until you get back to the first number). Prove that whatever number you choose, they will add to the same total.
If you can copy a network without lifting your pen off the paper and without drawing any line twice, then it is traversable. Decide which of these diagrams are traversable.
These formulae are often quoted, but rarely proved. In this article, we derive the formulae for the volumes of a square-based pyramid and a cone, using relatively simple mathematical concepts.
Write down a three-digit number Change the order of the digits to get a different number Find the difference between the two three digit numbers Follow the rest of the instructions then try. . . .
From a group of any 4 students in a class of 30, each has exchanged Christmas cards with the other three. Show that some students have exchanged cards with all the other students in the class. How. . . .
Arrange the numbers 1 to 16 into a 4 by 4 array. Choose a number. Cross out the numbers on the same row and column. Repeat this process. Add up you four numbers. Why do they always add up to 34?
What happens to the perimeter of triangle ABC as the two smaller circles change size and roll around inside the bigger circle?
Find the area of the annulus in terms of the length of the chord which is tangent to the inner circle.
A paradox is a statement that seems to be both untrue and true at the same time. This article looks at a few examples and challenges you to investigate them for yourself.
After some matches were played, most of the information in the table containing the results of the games was accidentally deleted. What was the score in each match played?
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
What are the missing numbers in the pyramids?
This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.
Use the numbers in the box below to make the base of a top-heavy pyramid whose top number is 200.
If you know the sizes of the angles marked with coloured dots in this diagram which angles can you find by calculation?
The first of two articles on Pythagorean Triples which asks how many right angled triangles can you find with the lengths of each side exactly a whole number measurement. Try it!
This jar used to hold perfumed oil. It contained enough oil to fill granid silver bottles. Each bottle held enough to fill ozvik golden goblets and each goblet held enough to fill vaswik crystal. . . .
We have exactly 100 coins. There are five different values of coins. We have decided to buy a piece of computer software for 39.75. We have the correct money, not a penny more, not a penny less! Can. . . .
Here are some examples of 'cons', and see if you can figure out where the trick is.
Six points are arranged in space so that no three are collinear. How many line segments can be formed by joining the points in pairs?
I start with a red, a green and a blue marble. I can trade any of my marbles for two others, one of each colour. Can I end up with five more blue marbles than red after a number of such trades?
A introduction to how patterns can be deceiving, and what is and is not a proof.
Nine cross country runners compete in a team competition in which there are three matches. If you were a judge how would you decide who would win?
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
This article introduces the idea of generic proof for younger children and illustrates how one example can offer a proof of a general result through unpacking its underlying structure.
In the following sum the letters A, B, C, D, E and F stand for six distinct digits. Find all the ways of replacing the letters with digits so that the arithmetic is correct.
Look at what happens when you take a number, square it and subtract your answer. What kind of number do you get? Can you prove it?
Look at three 'next door neighbours' amongst the counting numbers. Add them together. What do you notice?
Can you cross each of the seven bridges that join the north and south of the river to the two islands, once and once only, without retracing your steps?
A standard die has the numbers 1, 2 and 3 are opposite 6, 5 and 4 respectively so that opposite faces add to 7? If you make standard dice by writing 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 on blank cubes you will find. . . .
This article stems from research on the teaching of proof and offers guidance on how to move learners from focussing on experimental arguments to mathematical arguments and deductive reasoning.
Are these statements relating to odd and even numbers always true, sometimes true or never true?
I start with a red, a blue, a green and a yellow marble. I can trade any of my marbles for three others, one of each colour. Can I end up with exactly two marbles of each colour?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
Consider the equation 1/a + 1/b + 1/c = 1 where a, b and c are natural numbers and 0 < a < b < c. Prove that there is only one set of values which satisfy this equation.
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?