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. . . .
If I tell you two sides of a right-angled triangle, you can easily work out the third. But what if the angle between the two sides is not a right angle?
The tangles created by the twists and turns of the Conway rope trick are surprisingly symmetrical. Here's why!
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?
Find the missing angle between the two secants to the circle when the two angles at the centre subtended by the arcs created by the intersections of the secants and the circle are 50 and 120 degrees.
Can you find the areas of the trapezia in this sequence?
Choose a couple of the sequences. Try to picture how to make the next, and the next, and the next... Can you describe your reasoning?
Which hexagons tessellate?
Can you visualise whether these nets fold up into 3D shapes? Watch the videos each time to see if you were correct.
A picture is made by joining five small quadrilaterals together to make a large quadrilateral. Is it possible to draw a similar picture if all the small quadrilaterals are cyclic?
If you know the sizes of the angles marked with coloured dots in this diagram which angles can you find by calculation?
Prove that, given any three parallel lines, an equilateral triangle always exists with one vertex on each of the three lines.
Take any rectangle ABCD such that AB > BC. The point P is on AB and Q is on CD. Show that there is exactly one position of P and Q such that APCQ is a rhombus.
The diagram shows a regular pentagon with sides of unit length. Find all the angles in the diagram. Prove that the quadrilateral shown in red is a rhombus.
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.
ABC is an equilateral triangle and P is a point in the interior of the triangle. We know that AP = 3cm and BP = 4cm. Prove that CP must be less than 10 cm.
Semicircles are drawn on the sides of a rectangle ABCD. A circle passing through points ABCD carves out four crescent-shaped regions. Prove that the sum of the areas of the four crescents is equal to. . . .
Find the area of the annulus in terms of the length of the chord which is tangent to the inner circle.
An equilateral triangle is sitting on top of a square. What is the radius of the circle that circumscribes this shape?
An iterative method for finding the value of the Golden Ratio with explanations of how this involves the ratios of Fibonacci numbers and continued fractions.
Explore the continued fraction: 2+3/(2+3/(2+3/2+...)) What do you notice when successive terms are taken? What happens to the terms if the fraction goes on indefinitely?
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. . . .
L triominoes can fit together to make larger versions of themselves. Is every size possible to make in this way?
This article looks at knight's moves on a chess board and introduces you to the idea of vectors and vector addition.
Caroline and James pick sets of five numbers. Charlie chooses three of them that add together to make a multiple of three. Can they stop him?
We are given a regular icosahedron having three red vertices. Show that it has a vertex that has at least two red neighbours.
A composite number is one that is neither prime nor 1. Show that 10201 is composite in any base.
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?
ABCD is a square. P is the midpoint of AB and is joined to C. A line from D perpendicular to PC meets the line at the point Q. Prove AQ = AD.
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...
In how many distinct ways can six islands be joined by bridges so that each island can be reached from every other island...
This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.
The country Sixtania prints postage stamps with only three values 6 lucres, 10 lucres and 15 lucres (where the currency is in lucres).Which values cannot be made up with combinations of these postage. . . .
Take any prime number greater than 3 , square it and subtract one. Working on the building blocks will help you to explain what is special about your results.
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 article extends the discussions in "Whole number dynamics I". Continuing the proof that, for all starting points, the Happy Number sequence goes into a loop or homes in on a fixed point.
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
The first of five articles concentrating on whole number dynamics, ideas of general dynamical systems are introduced and seen in concrete cases.
Imagine two identical cylindrical pipes meeting at right angles and think about the shape of the space which belongs to both pipes. Early Chinese mathematicians call this shape the mouhefanggai.
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.
Take any whole number between 1 and 999, add the squares of the digits to get a new number. Make some conjectures about what happens in general.
An article which gives an account of some properties of magic squares.
Start with any whole number N, write N as a multiple of 10 plus a remainder R and produce a new whole number N'. Repeat. What happens?
This article discusses how every Pythagorean triple (a, b, c) can be illustrated by a square and an L shape within another square. You are invited to find some triples for yourself.
The final of five articles which containe the proof of why the sequence introduced in article IV either reaches the fixed point 0 or the sequence enters a repeating cycle of four values.
It is impossible to trisect an angle using only ruler and compasses but it can be done using a carpenter's square.
Patterns that repeat in a line are strangely interesting. How many types are there and how do you tell one type from another?
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and inequalities.
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. . . .
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?