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. . . .
Given that u>0 and v>0 find the smallest possible value of 1/u + 1/v given that u + v = 5 by different methods.
Can you use the diagram to prove the AM-GM inequality?
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.
If x + y = -1 find the largest value of xy by coordinate geometry, by calculus and by algebra.
You have twelve weights, one of which is different from the rest. Using just 3 weighings, can you identify which weight is the odd one out, and whether it is heavier or lighter than the rest?
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.
The picture illustrates the sum 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = (4 x 5)/2. Prove the general formula for the sum of the first n natural numbers and the formula for the sum of the cubes of the first n natural. . . .
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!
Find the positive integer solutions of the equation (1+1/a)(1+1/b)(1+1/c) = 2
Explain why, when moving heavy objects on rollers, the object moves twice as fast as the rollers. Try a similar experiment yourself.
Three points A, B and C lie in this order on a line, and P is any point in the plane. Use the Cosine Rule to prove the following statement.
Can you see how this picture illustrates the formula for the sum of the first six cube numbers?
Janine noticed, while studying some cube numbers, that if you take three consecutive whole numbers and multiply them together and then add the middle number of the three, you get the middle number. . . .
Investigate the sequences obtained by starting with any positive 2 digit number (10a+b) and repeatedly using the rule 10a+b maps to 10b-a to get the next number in the sequence.
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. . . .
Toni Beardon has chosen this article introducing a rich area for practical exploration and discovery in 3D geometry
Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.
This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and inequalities.
Take any two numbers between 0 and 1. Prove that the sum of the numbers is always less than one plus their product?
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. . . .
Pick a square within a multiplication square and add the numbers on each diagonal. What do you notice?
Can you visualise whether these nets fold up into 3D shapes? Watch the videos each time to see if you were correct.
Try to solve this very difficult problem and then study our two suggested solutions. How would you use your knowledge to try to solve variants on the original problem?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
These proofs are wrong. Can you see why?
When is it impossible to make number sandwiches?
A serious but easily readable discussion of proof in mathematics with some amusing stories and some interesting examples.
What is the largest number of intersection points that a triangle and a quadrilateral can have?
We are given a regular icosahedron having three red vertices. Show that it has a vertex that has at least two red neighbours.
Investigate circuits and record your findings in this simple introduction to truth tables and logic.
Show that the arithmetic mean, geometric mean and harmonic mean of a and b can be the lengths of the sides of a right-angles triangle if and only if a = bx^3, where x is the Golden Ratio.
Prove that the internal angle bisectors of a triangle will never be perpendicular to each other.
Mark a point P inside a closed curve. Is it always possible to find two points that lie on the curve, such that P is the mid point of the line joining these two points?
Find all the solutions to the this equation.
The diagonal of a square intersects the line joining one of the unused corners to the midpoint of the opposite side. What do you notice about the line segments produced?
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.
Prove Pythagoras' Theorem using enlargements and scale factors.
Prove that the shaded area of the semicircle is equal to the area of the inner circle.
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.
Can you explain why a sequence of operations always gives you perfect squares?
Prove that, given any three parallel lines, an equilateral triangle always exists with one vertex on each of the three lines.
A composite number is one that is neither prime nor 1. Show that 10201 is composite in any base.
It is obvious that we can fit four circles of diameter 1 unit in a square of side 2 without overlapping. What is the smallest square into which we can fit 3 circles of diameter 1 unit?
Generalise the sum of a GP by using derivatives to make the coefficients into powers of the natural numbers.
The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect square - can you explain why?
With n people anywhere in a field each shoots a water pistol at the nearest person. In general who gets wet? What difference does it make if n is odd or even?
Find a connection between the shape of a special ellipse and an infinite string of nested square roots.