This is the second of two articles and discusses problems relating to the curvature of space, shortest distances on surfaces, triangulations of surfaces and representation by graphs.
Here is a proof of Euler's formula in the plane and on a sphere together with projects to explore cases of the formula for a polygon with holes, for the torus and other solids with holes and the. . . .
The tangles created by the twists and turns of the Conway rope trick are surprisingly symmetrical. Here's why!
Eulerian and Hamiltonian circuits are defined with some simple examples and a couple of puzzles to illustrate Hamiltonian circuits.
A connected graph is a graph in which we can get from any vertex to any other by travelling along the edges. A tree is a connected graph with no closed circuits (or loops. Prove that every tree has. . . .
Prove that you cannot form a Magic W with a total of 12 or less or with a with a total of 18 or more.
Draw a 'doodle' - a closed intersecting curve drawn without taking pencil from paper. What can you prove about the intersections?
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. . . .
I want some cubes painted with three blue faces and three red faces. How many different cubes can be painted like that?
Toni Beardon has chosen this article introducing a rich area for practical exploration and discovery in 3D geometry
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. . . .
An introduction to the binomial coefficient, and exploration of some of the formulae it satisfies.
Suppose A always beats B and B always beats C, then would you expect A to beat C? Not always! What seems obvious is not always true. Results always need to be proved in mathematics.
How many tours visit each vertex of a cube once and only once? How many return to the starting point?
Try to solve this very difficult problem and then study our two suggested solutions. How would you use your knowledge to try to solve variants on the original problem?
This article invites you to get familiar with a strategic game called "sprouts". The game is simple enough for younger children to understand, and has also provided experienced mathematicians with. . . .
Professor Korner has generously supported school mathematics for more than 30 years and has been a good friend to NRICH since it started.
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. . . .
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
Find the positive integer solutions of the equation (1+1/a)(1+1/b)(1+1/c) = 2
Investigate the sequences obtained by starting with any positive 2 digit number (10a+b) and repeatedly using the rule 10a+b maps to 10b-a to get the next number in the sequence.
This is an interactivity in which you have to sort the steps in the completion of the square into the correct order to prove the formula for the solutions of quadratic equations.
Can you rearrange the cards to make a series of correct mathematical statements?
Freddie Manners, of Packwood Haugh School in Shropshire solved an alphanumeric without using the extra information supplied and this article explains his reasoning.
An iterative method for finding the value of the Golden Ratio with explanations of how this involves the ratios of Fibonacci numbers and continued fractions.
Can you visualise whether these nets fold up into 3D shapes? Watch the videos each time to see if you were correct.
How many noughts are at the end of these giant numbers?
Given any two polynomials in a single variable it is always possible to eliminate the variable and obtain a formula showing the relationship between the two polynomials. Try this one.
This article discusses how every Pythagorean triple (a, b, c) can be illustrated by a square and an L shape within another square. You are invited to find some triples for yourself.
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.
Is the mean of the squares of two numbers greater than, or less than, the square of their means?
A serious but easily readable discussion of proof in mathematics with some amusing stories and some interesting examples.
To find the integral of a polynomial, evaluate it at some special points and add multiples of these values.
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. . . .
This follows up the 'magic Squares for Special Occasions' article which tells you you to create a 4by4 magicsquare with a special date on the top line using no negative numbers and no repeats.
In this 7-sandwich: 7 1 3 1 6 4 3 5 7 2 4 6 2 5 there are 7 numbers between the 7s, 6 between the 6s etc. The article shows which values of n can make n-sandwiches and which cannot.
Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and inequalities.
What is the largest number of intersection points that a triangle and a quadrilateral can have?
If you think that mathematical proof is really clearcut and universal then you should read this article.
An article about the strategy for playing The Triangle Game which appears on the NRICH site. It contains a simple lemma about labelling a grid of equilateral triangles within a triangular frame.
Given a set of points (x,y) with distinct x values, find a polynomial that goes through all of them, then prove some results about the existence and uniqueness of these polynomials.
L triominoes can fit together to make larger versions of themselves. Is every size possible to make in this way?
An introduction to some beautiful results of Number Theory (a branch of pure mathematics devoted primarily to the study of the integers and integer-valued functions)
These proofs are wrong. Can you see why?
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?
Explore a number pattern which has the same symmetries in different bases.
Do you have enough information to work out the area of the shaded quadrilateral?
Mark a point P inside a closed curve. Is it always possible to find two points that lie on the curve, such that P is the mid point of the line joining these two points?
If I tell you two sides of a right-angled triangle, you can easily work out the third. But what if the angle between the two sides is not a right angle?