Explore what happens when you draw graphs of quadratic equations with coefficients based on a geometric sequence.

Can you explain why a sequence of operations always gives you perfect squares?

The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect square - can you explain why?

Take any pair of two digit numbers x=ab and y=cd where, without loss of generality, ab > cd . Form two 4 digit numbers r=abcd and s=cdab and calculate: {r^2 - s^2} /{x^2 - y^2}.

If a two digit number has its digits reversed and the smaller of the two numbers is subtracted from the larger, prove the difference can never be prime.

Show that if you add 1 to the product of four consecutive numbers the answer is ALWAYS a perfect square.

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. . . .

A composite number is one that is neither prime nor 1. Show that 10201 is composite in any base.

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. . . .

Pick a square within a multiplication square and add the numbers on each diagonal. What do you notice?

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?

Janine noticed, while studying some cube numbers, that if you take three consecutive whole numbers and multiply them together and then add the middle number of the three, you get the middle number. . . .

Find some triples of whole numbers a, b and c such that a^2 + b^2 + c^2 is a multiple of 4. Is it necessarily the case that a, b and c must all be even? If so, can you explain why?

Pick the number of times a week that you eat chocolate. This number must be more than one but less than ten. Multiply this number by 2. Add 5 (for Sunday). Multiply by 50... Can you explain why it. . . .

The Tower of Hanoi is an ancient mathematical challenge. Working on the building blocks may help you to explain the patterns you notice.

I am exactly n times my daughter's age. In m years I shall be ... How old am I?

Find the largest integer which divides every member of the following sequence: 1^5-1, 2^5-2, 3^5-3, ... n^5-n.

The problem is how did Archimedes calculate the lengths of the sides of the polygons which needed him to be able to calculate square roots?

Can you convince me of each of the following: If a square number is multiplied by a square number the product is ALWAYS a square number...

Take any prime number greater than 3 , square it and subtract one. Working on the building blocks will help you to explain what is special about your results.

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. . . .

Kyle and his teacher disagree about his test score - who is right?

Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?

Caroline and James pick sets of five numbers. Charlie chooses three of them that add together to make a multiple of three. Can they stop him?

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?

Euler found four whole numbers such that the sum of any two of the numbers is a perfect square...

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?

Find the smallest positive integer N such that N/2 is a perfect cube, N/3 is a perfect fifth power and N/5 is a perfect seventh power.

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. . . .

Make a set of numbers that use all the digits from 1 to 9, once and once only. Add them up. The result is divisible by 9. Add each of the digits in the new number. What is their sum? Now try some. . . .

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. . . .

Here are some examples of 'cons', and see if you can figure out where the trick is.

Eight children enter the autumn cross-country race at school. How many possible ways could they come in at first, second and third places?

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.

There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?

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.

Consider the equation 1/a + 1/b + 1/c = 1 where a, b and c are natural numbers and 0 < a < b < c. Prove that there is only one set of values which satisfy this equation.

Four jewellers share their stock. Can you work out the relative values of their gems?

When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...

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.

How many noughts are at the end of these giant numbers?

Is the mean of the squares of two numbers greater than, or less than, the square of their means?

What does logic mean to us and is that different to mathematical logic? We will explore these questions in this article.

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.

Prove that if a^2+b^2 is a multiple of 3 then both a and b are multiples of 3.

The country Sixtania prints postage stamps with only three values 6 lucres, 10 lucres and 15 lucres (where the currency is in lucres).Which values cannot be made up with combinations of these postage. . . .

If you know the sizes of the angles marked with coloured dots in this diagram which angles can you find by calculation?

The tangles created by the twists and turns of the Conway rope trick are surprisingly symmetrical. Here's why!