L triominoes can fit together to make larger versions of themselves. Is every size possible to make in this way?
If you know the sizes of the angles marked with coloured dots in this diagram which angles can you find by calculation?
There are 12 identical looking coins, one of which is a fake. The counterfeit coin is of a different weight to the rest. What is the minimum number of weighings needed to locate the fake coin?
What is the largest number of intersection points that a triangle and a quadrilateral can have?
When is it impossible to make number sandwiches?
Is the mean of the squares of two numbers greater than, or less than, the square of their means?
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.
We have exactly 100 coins. There are five different values of coins. We have decided to buy a piece of computer software for 39.75. We have the correct money, not a penny more, not a penny less! Can. . . .
Prove Pythagoras' Theorem using enlargements and scale factors.
Here are some examples of 'cons', and see if you can figure out where the trick is.
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
Six points are arranged in space so that no three are collinear. How many line segments can be formed by joining the points in pairs?
Four jewellers share their stock. Can you work out the relative values of their gems?
Imagine two identical cylindrical pipes meeting at right angles and think about the shape of the space which belongs to both pipes. Early Chinese mathematicians call this shape the mouhefanggai.
What does logic mean to us and is that different to mathematical logic? We will explore these questions in this article.
Clearly if a, b and c are the lengths of the sides of an equilateral triangle then a^2 + b^2 + c^2 = ab + bc + ca. Is the converse true?
I want some cubes painted with three blue faces and three red faces. How many different cubes can be painted like that?
These formulae are often quoted, but rarely proved. In this article, we derive the formulae for the volumes of a square-based pyramid and a cone, using relatively simple mathematical concepts.
Here are three 'tricks' to amaze your friends. But the really clever trick is explaining to them why these 'tricks' are maths not magic. Like all good magicians, you should practice by trying. . . .
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.
Write down a three-digit number Change the order of the digits to get a different number Find the difference between the two three digit numbers Follow the rest of the instructions then try. . . .
Spotting patterns can be an important first step - explaining why it is appropriate to generalise is the next step, and often the most interesting and important.
Liam's house has a staircase with 12 steps. He can go down the steps one at a time or two at time. In how many different ways can Liam go down the 12 steps?
When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...
Prove that, given any three parallel lines, an equilateral triangle always exists with one vertex on each of the three lines.
What can you say about the lengths of the sides of a quadrilateral whose vertices are on a unit circle?
Find the area of the annulus in terms of the length of the chord which is tangent to the inner circle.
Eight children enter the autumn cross-country race at school. How many possible ways could they come in at first, second and third places?
Do you know how to find the area of a triangle? You can count the squares. What happens if we turn the triangle on end? Press the button and see. Try counting the number of units in the triangle now. . . .
Can you find the areas of the trapezia in this sequence?
Let a(n) be the number of ways of expressing the integer n as an ordered sum of 1's and 2's. Let b(n) be the number of ways of expressing n as an ordered sum of integers greater than 1. (i) Calculate. . . .
A huge wheel is rolling past your window. What do you see?
Which hexagons tessellate?
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
This is the second article on right-angled triangles whose edge lengths are whole numbers.
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!
Take any rectangle ABCD such that AB > BC. The point P is on AB and Q is on CD. Show that there is exactly one position of P and Q such that APCQ is a rhombus.
It is impossible to trisect an angle using only ruler and compasses but it can be done using a carpenter's square.
An equilateral triangle is constructed on BC. A line QD is drawn, where Q is the midpoint of AC. Prove that AB // QD.
Can you use the diagram to prove the AM-GM inequality?
Can you make sense of the three methods to work out the area of the kite in the square?
Construct two equilateral triangles on a straight line. There are two lengths that look the same - can you prove it?
The knight's move on a chess board is 2 steps in one direction and one step in the other direction. Prove that a knight cannot visit every square on the board once and only (a tour) on a 2 by n board. . . .
Prove that the internal angle bisectors of a triangle will never be perpendicular to each other.
I start with a red, a blue, a green and a yellow marble. I can trade any of my marbles for three others, one of each colour. Can I end up with exactly two marbles of each colour?
I start with a red, a green and a blue marble. I can trade any of my marbles for two others, one of each colour. Can I end up with five more blue marbles than red after a number of such trades?
From a group of any 4 students in a class of 30, each has exchanged Christmas cards with the other three. Show that some students have exchanged cards with all the other students in the class. How. . . .
A little bit of algebra explains this 'magic'. Ask a friend to pick 3 consecutive numbers and to tell you a multiple of 3. Then ask them to add the four numbers and multiply by 67, and to tell you. . . .
Four identical right angled triangles are drawn on the sides of a square. Two face out, two face in. Why do the four vertices marked with dots lie on one line?
Explore what happens when you draw graphs of quadratic equations with coefficients based on a geometric sequence.