Resources tagged with: Visualising

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There are 179 results

Broad Topics > Thinking Mathematically > Visualising

An Unusual Shape

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you maximise the area available to a grazing goat?

Like a Circle in a Spiral

Age 7 to 16 Challenge Level:

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?

The Old Goats

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Weighty Problem

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Efficient Cutting

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Use a single sheet of A4 paper and make a cylinder having the greatest possible volume. The cylinder must be closed off by a circle at each end.

Efficient Packing

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

How efficiently can you pack together disks?

Reflecting Squarely

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

In how many ways can you fit all three pieces together to make shapes with line symmetry?

A Problem of Time

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Consider a watch face which has identical hands and identical marks for the hours. It is opposite to a mirror. When is the time as read direct and in the mirror exactly the same between 6 and 7?

Shady Symmetry

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

How many different symmetrical shapes can you make by shading triangles or squares?

Rolling Triangle

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

The triangle ABC is equilateral. The arc AB has centre C, the arc BC has centre A and the arc CA has centre B. Explain how and why this shape can roll along between two parallel tracks.

Rolling Around

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

A circle rolls around the outside edge of a square so that its circumference always touches the edge of the square. Can you describe the locus of the centre of the circle?

Is There a Theorem?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Draw a square. A second square of the same size slides around the first always maintaining contact and keeping the same orientation. How far does the dot travel?

Coke Machine

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

The coke machine in college takes 50 pence pieces. It also takes a certain foreign coin of traditional design...

Just Rolling Round

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

P is a point on the circumference of a circle radius r which rolls, without slipping, inside a circle of radius 2r. What is the locus of P?

Khun Phaen Escapes to Freedom

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Slide the pieces to move Khun Phaen past all the guards into the position on the right from which he can escape to freedom.

Playground Snapshot

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

The image in this problem is part of a piece of equipment found in the playground of a school. How would you describe it to someone over the phone?

Triangles in the Middle

Age 11 to 18 Challenge Level:

This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and reasoning to agree a final product.

LOGO Challenge - Circles as Animals

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

See if you can anticipate successive 'generations' of the two animals shown here.

Tilting Triangles

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A right-angled isosceles triangle is rotated about the centre point of a square. What can you say about the area of the part of the square covered by the triangle as it rotates?

Polygon Rings

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Join pentagons together edge to edge. Will they form a ring?

Pattern Power

Age 5 to 14

Mathematics is the study of patterns. Studying pattern is an opportunity to observe, hypothesise, experiment, discover and create.


Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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?

Star Gazing

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Find the ratio of the outer shaded area to the inner area for a six pointed star and an eight pointed star.

Cube Paths

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Given a 2 by 2 by 2 skeletal cube with one route `down' the cube. How many routes are there from A to B?

Tied Up

Age 14 to 16 Short Challenge Level:

How much of the field can the animals graze?

Polygon Pictures

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you work out how these polygon pictures were drawn, and use that to figure out their angles?


Age 7 to 18 Challenge Level:

A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.

Bendy Quad

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Four rods are hinged at their ends to form a convex quadrilateral. Investigate the different shapes that the quadrilateral can take. Be patient this problem may be slow to load.

Semi-regular Tessellations

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

Semi-regular tessellations combine two or more different regular polygons to fill the plane. Can you find all the semi-regular tessellations?

Cutting a Cube

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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?

Tessellating Hexagons

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Which hexagons tessellate?


Age 5 to 18

An ancient game for two from Egypt. You'll need twelve distinctive 'stones' each to play. You could chalk out the board on the ground - do ask permission first.

Pumpkin Patch

Age 5 to 18

A game for two players based on a game from the Somali people of Africa. The first player to pick all the other's 'pumpkins' is the winner.


Age 5 to 18

This game for two, was played in ancient Egypt as far back as 1400 BC. The game was taken by the Moors to Spain, where it is mentioned in 13th century manuscripts, and the Spanish name Alquerque. . . .


Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

An irregular tetrahedron has two opposite sides the same length a and the line joining their midpoints is perpendicular to these two edges and is of length b. What is the volume of the tetrahedron?

When the Angles of a Triangle Don't Add up to 180 Degrees

Age 14 to 18

This article outlines the underlying axioms of spherical geometry giving a simple proof that the sum of the angles of a triangle on the surface of a unit sphere is equal to pi plus the area of the. . . .


Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A 10x10x10 cube is made from 27 2x2 cubes with corridors between them. Find the shortest route from one corner to the opposite corner.


Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A circular plate rolls in contact with the sides of a rectangular tray. How much of its circumference comes into contact with the sides of the tray when it rolls around one circuit?


Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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?

All Tied Up

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A ribbon runs around a box so that it makes a complete loop with two parallel pieces of ribbon on the top. How long will the ribbon be?

Getting an Angle

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

How can you make an angle of 60 degrees by folding a sheet of paper twice?

Prime Magic

Age 7 to 16 Challenge Level:

Place the numbers 1, 2, 3,..., 9 one on each square of a 3 by 3 grid so that all the rows and columns add up to a prime number. How many different solutions can you find?

Troublesome Dice

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

When dice land edge-up, we usually roll again. But what if we didn't...?

John's Train Is on Time

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

A train leaves on time. After it has gone 8 miles (at 33mph) the driver looks at his watch and sees that the hour hand is exactly over the minute hand. When did the train leave the station?


Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

This is a simple version of an ancient game played all over the world. It is also called Mancala. What tactics will increase your chances of winning?

Seven Squares - Group-worthy Task

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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?

3D Treasure Hunt

Age 14 to 18 Challenge Level:

Some treasure has been hidden in a three-dimensional grid! Can you work out a strategy to find it as efficiently as possible?

Something in Common

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A square of area 3 square units cannot be drawn on a 2D grid so that each of its vertices have integer coordinates, but can it be drawn on a 3D grid? Investigate squares that can be drawn.

Bands and Bridges: Bringing Topology Back

Age 7 to 14

Lyndon Baker describes how the Mobius strip and Euler's law can introduce pupils to the idea of topology.

Travelling Salesman

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

A Hamiltonian circuit is a continuous path in a graph that passes through each of the vertices exactly once and returns to the start. How many Hamiltonian circuits can you find in these graphs?