Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?
Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.
Explore one of these five pictures.
While we were sorting some papers we found 3 strange sheets which seemed to come from small books but there were page numbers at the foot of each page. Did the pages come from the same book?
Let's suppose that you are going to have a magazine which has 16 pages of A5 size. Can you find some different ways to make these pages? Investigate the pattern for each if you number the pages.
Take 5 cubes of one colour and 2 of another colour. How many different ways can you join them if the 5 must touch the table and the 2 must not touch the table?
How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can you find all the ways of doing this?
How many triangles can you make on the 3 by 3 pegboard?
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.
How can you arrange these 10 matches in four piles so that when you move one match from three of the piles into the fourth, you end up with the same arrangement?
How many different sets of numbers with at least four members can you find in the numbers in this box?
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?
What happens when you add the digits of a number then multiply the result by 2 and you keep doing this? You could try for different numbers and different rules.
Make new patterns from simple turning instructions. You can have a go using pencil and paper or with a floor robot.
Have a go at this 3D extension to the Pebbles problem.
The ancient Egyptians were said to make right-angled triangles using a rope with twelve equal sections divided by knots. What other triangles could you make if you had a rope like this?
Suppose we allow ourselves to use three numbers less than 10 and multiply them together. How many different products can you find? How do you know you've got them all?
Place four pebbles on the sand in the form of a square. Keep adding as few pebbles as necessary to double the area. How many extra pebbles are added each time?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
Let's say you can only use two different lengths - 2 units and 4 units. Using just these 2 lengths as the edges how many different cuboids can you make?
I like to walk along the cracks of the paving stones, but not the outside edge of the path itself. How many different routes can you find for me to take?
How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same colour are next to each other in any direction?
This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
Using different numbers of sticks, how many different triangles are you able to make? Can you make any rules about the numbers of sticks that make the most triangles?
This challenge involves calculating the number of candles needed on birthday cakes. It is an opportunity to explore numbers and discover new things.
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can you investigate patios of different sizes?
When newspaper pages get separated at home we have to try to sort them out and get things in the correct order. How many ways can we arrange these pages so that the numbering may be different?
How many shapes can you build from three red and two green cubes? Can you use what you've found out to predict the number for four red and two green?
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
If you have three circular objects, you could arrange them so that they are separate, touching, overlapping or inside each other. Can you investigate all the different possibilities?
The challenge here is to find as many routes as you can for a fence to go so that this town is divided up into two halves, each with 8 blocks.
You cannot choose a selection of ice cream flavours that includes totally what someone has already chosen. Have a go and find all the different ways in which seven children can have ice cream.
In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?
Compare the numbers of particular tiles in one or all of these three designs, inspired by the floor tiles of a church in Cambridge.
Start with four numbers at the corners of a square and put the total of two corners in the middle of that side. Keep going... Can you estimate what the size of the last four numbers will be?
Explore Alex's number plumber. What questions would you like to ask? What do you think is happening to the numbers?
If I use 12 green tiles to represent my lawn, how many different ways could I arrange them? How many border tiles would I need each time?
Ana and Ross looked in a trunk in the attic. They found old cloaks and gowns, hats and masks. How many possible costumes could they make?
Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?
Can you find out how the 6-triangle shape is transformed in these tessellations? Will the tessellations go on for ever? Why or why not?
An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.
What happens if you join every second point on this circle? How about every third point? Try with different steps and see if you can predict what will happen.
Cut differently-sized square corners from a square piece of paper to make boxes without lids. Do they all have the same volume?
We can arrange dots in a similar way to the 5 on a dice and they usually sit quite well into a rectangular shape. How many altogether in this 3 by 5? What happens for other sizes?
48 is called an abundant number because it is less than the sum of its factors (without itself). Can you find some more abundant numbers?
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
Can you find ways of joining cubes together so that 28 faces are visible?
A follow-up activity to Tiles in the Garden.
How many different cuboids can you make when you use four CDs or DVDs? How about using five, then six?