Resources tagged with: Investigations

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Broad Topics > Thinking Mathematically > Investigations

Sending Cards

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge asks you to investigate the total number of cards that would be sent if four children send one to all three others. How many would be sent if there were five children? Six?

The Pied Piper of Hamelin

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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!

Magic Constants

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In a Magic Square all the rows, columns and diagonals add to the 'Magic Constant'. How would you change the magic constant of this square?

Abundant Numbers

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

It Was 2010!

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?

Polo Square

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.

Consecutive Numbers

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.

Calendar Patterns

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In this section from a calendar, put a square box around the 1st, 2nd, 8th and 9th. Add all the pairs of numbers. What do you notice about the answers?

Five Coins

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Ben has five coins in his pocket. How much money might he have?

Street Sequences

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street in different ways.

It Figures

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Bean Bags for Bernard's Bag

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Month Mania

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you design a new shape for the twenty-eight squares and arrange the numbers in a logical way? What patterns do you notice?

Marvellous Matrix

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Follow the directions for circling numbers in the matrix. Add all the circled numbers together. Note your answer. Try again with a different starting number. What do you notice?

Sorting the Numbers

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Complete these two jigsaws then put one on top of the other. What happens when you add the 'touching' numbers? What happens when you change the position of the jigsaws?

Follow the Numbers

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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.

Exploring Wild & Wonderful Number Patterns

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

EWWNP means Exploring Wild and Wonderful Number Patterns Created by Yourself! Investigate what happens if we create number patterns using some simple rules.

Number Squares

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Worms

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Place this "worm" on the 100 square and find the total of the four squares it covers. Keeping its head in the same place, what other totals can you make?

Times

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Which times on a digital clock have a line of symmetry? Which look the same upside-down? You might like to try this investigation and find out!

Alien Counting

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different ways these aliens count in this challenge. You could start by thinking about how each of them would write our number 7.

Sometimes We Lose Things

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Well now, what would happen if we lost all the nines in our number system? Have a go at writing the numbers out in this way and have a look at the multiplications table.

Doplication

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

It's All about 64

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Write the numbers up to 64 in an interesting way so that the shape they make at the end is interesting, different, more exciting ... than just a square.

Calcunos

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?

Taking a Die for a Walk

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the numbers that come up on a die as you roll it in the direction of north, south, east and west, without going over the path it's already made.

Stairs

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge is to design different step arrangements, which must go along a distance of 6 on the steps and must end up at 6 high.

Pebbles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Room Doubling

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.

Two on Five

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Watch Your Feet

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Sweets in a Box

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Sets of Numbers

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many different sets of numbers with at least four members can you find in the numbers in this box?

Tiling

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify predictions.

Cubes Here and There

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Sticks and Triangles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

2010: A Year of Investigations

Age 5 to 14

This article for teachers suggests ideas for activities built around 10 and 2010.

Gran, How Old Are You?

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

When Charlie asked his grandmother how old she is, he didn't get a straightforward reply! Can you work out how old she is?

Polygonals

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.

More Children and Plants

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

This challenge extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.

More Plant Spaces

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

This challenging activity involves finding different ways to distribute fifteen items among four sets, when the sets must include three, four, five and six items.

Crossing the Town Square

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.

Building with Rods

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?

Birthday Cake Candles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This challenge involves calculating the number of candles needed on birthday cakes. It is an opportunity to explore numbers and discover new things.

Making Cuboids

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Lost Books

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Counting on Letters

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

The letters of the word ABACUS have been arranged in the shape of a triangle. How many different ways can you find to read the word ABACUS from this triangular pattern?

Train Carriages

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Suppose there is a train with 24 carriages which are going to be put together to make up some new trains. Can you find all the ways that this can be done?

Magazines

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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.

Sets of Four Numbers

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

There are ten children in Becky's group. Can you find a set of numbers for each of them? Are there any other sets?