Imagine starting with one yellow cube and covering it all over with a single layer of red cubes, and then covering that cube with a layer of blue cubes. How many red and blue cubes would you need?
How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there are in different sized boxes?
Four rods, two of length a and two of length b, are linked to form a kite. The linkage is moveable so that the angles change. What is the maximum area of the kite?
Imagine an infinitely large sheet of square dotty paper on which you can draw triangles of any size you wish (providing each vertex is on a dot). What areas is it/is it not possible to draw?
Can you dissect a square into: 4, 7, 10, 13... other squares? 6, 9, 12, 15... other squares? 8, 11, 14... other squares?
Watch these videos to see how Phoebe, Alice and Luke chose to draw 7 squares. How would they draw 100?
Seven small rectangular pictures have one inch wide frames. The frames are removed and the pictures are fitted together like a jigsaw to make a rectangle of length 12 inches. Find the dimensions of. . . .
ABCDEFGH is a 3 by 3 by 3 cube. Point P is 1/3 along AB (that is AP : PB = 1 : 2), point Q is 1/3 along GH and point R is 1/3 along ED. What is the area of the triangle PQR?
A and B are two interlocking cogwheels having p teeth and q teeth respectively. One tooth on B is painted red. Find the values of p and q for which the red tooth on B contacts every gap on the. . . .
The diagram shows a very heavy kitchen cabinet. It cannot be lifted but it can be pivoted around a corner. The task is to move it, without sliding, in a series of turns about the corners so that it. . . .
A useful visualising exercise which offers opportunities for discussion and generalising, and which could be used for thinking about the formulae needed for generating the results on a spreadsheet.
Show that among the interior angles of a convex polygon there cannot be more than three acute angles.
In the game of Noughts and Crosses there are 8 distinct winning lines. How many distinct winning lines are there in a game played on a 3 by 3 by 3 board, with 27 cells?
Rectangles are considered different if they vary in size or have different locations. How many different rectangles can be drawn on a chessboard?
What is the minimum number of squares a 13 by 13 square can be dissected into?
How many moves does it take to swap over some red and blue frogs? Do you have a method?
Triangular numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?
The whole set of tiles is used to make a square. This has a green and blue border. There are no green or blue tiles anywhere in the square except on this border. How many tiles are there in the set?
Start with a large square, join the midpoints of its sides, you'll see four right angled triangles. Remove these triangles, a second square is left. Repeat the operation. What happens?
A tilted square is a square with no horizontal sides. Can you devise a general instruction for the construction of a square when you are given just one of its sides?
Points P, Q, R and S each divide the sides AB, BC, CD and DA respectively in the ratio of 2 : 1. Join the points. What is the area of the parallelogram PQRS in relation to the original rectangle?
A rectangular field has two posts with a ring on top of each post. There are two quarrelsome goats and plenty of ropes which you can tie to their collars. How can you secure them so they can't. . . .
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?
Imagine you are suspending a cube from one vertex and allowing it to hang freely. What shape does the surface of the water make around the cube?
How many winning lines can you make in a three-dimensional version of noughts and crosses?
A huge wheel is rolling past your window. What do you see?
Which hexagons tessellate?
If you move the tiles around, can you make squares with different coloured edges?
Given a 2 by 2 by 2 skeletal cube with one route `down' the cube. How many routes are there from A to B?
Find all the ways to cut out a 'net' of six squares that can be folded into a cube.
A cheap and simple toy with lots of mathematics. Can you interpret the images that are produced? Can you predict the pattern that will be produced using different wheels?
On the graph there are 28 marked points. These points all mark the vertices (corners) of eight hidden squares. Can you find the eight hidden squares?
Blue Flibbins are so jealous of their red partners that they will not leave them on their own with any other bue Flibbin. What is the quickest way of getting the five pairs of Flibbins safely to. . . .
At the time of writing the hour and minute hands of my clock are at right angles. How long will it be before they are at right angles again?
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
Can you describe this route to infinity? Where will the arrows take you next?
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.
We start with one yellow cube and build around it to make a 3x3x3 cube with red cubes. Then we build around that red cube with blue cubes and so on. How many cubes of each colour have we used?
What's the largest volume of box you can make from a square of paper?
A 3x3x3 cube may be reduced to unit cubes in six saw cuts. If after every cut you can rearrange the pieces before cutting straight through, can you do it in fewer?
Can you find a way of representing these arrangements of balls?
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. . . .
What is the shape of wrapping paper that you would need to completely wrap this model?
A half-cube is cut into two pieces by a plane through the long diagonal and at right angles to it. Can you draw a net of these pieces? Are they identical?
Mathematics is the study of patterns. Studying pattern is an opportunity to observe, hypothesise, experiment, discover and create.
When dice land edge-up, we usually roll again. But what if we didn't...?
Anne completes a circuit around a circular track in 40 seconds. Brenda runs in the opposite direction and meets Anne every 15 seconds. How long does it take Brenda to run around the track?
How many different ways can I lay 10 paving slabs, each 2 foot by 1 foot, to make a path 2 foot wide and 10 foot long from my back door into my garden, without cutting any of the paving slabs?
Is it possible to rearrange the numbers 1,2......12 around a clock face in such a way that every two numbers in adjacent positions differ by any of 3, 4 or 5 hours?
Draw all the possible distinct triangles on a 4 x 4 dotty grid. Convince me that you have all possible triangles.