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. . . .
Eulerian and Hamiltonian circuits are defined with some simple examples and a couple of puzzles to illustrate Hamiltonian circuits.
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
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.
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?
Can you invert the logic to prove these statements?
This article stems from research on the teaching of proof and offers guidance on how to move learners from focussing on experimental arguments to mathematical arguments and deductive reasoning.
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. . . .
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 you think that mathematical proof is really clearcut and universal then you should read this article.
Can you rearrange the cards to make a series of correct mathematical statements?
Professor Korner has generously supported school mathematics for more than 30 years and has been a good friend to NRICH since it started.
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. . . .
Can you work through these direct proofs, using our interactive proof sorters?
Find the positive integer solutions of the equation (1+1/a)(1+1/b)(1+1/c) = 2
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.
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.
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.
If x + y = -1 find the largest value of xy by coordinate geometry, by calculus and by algebra.
A serious but easily readable discussion of proof in mathematics with some amusing stories and some interesting examples.
We continue the discussion given in Euclid's Algorithm I, and here we shall discover when an equation of the form ax+by=c has no solutions, and when it has infinitely many solutions.
These proofs are wrong. Can you see why?
A introduction to how patterns can be deceiving, and what is and is not a proof.
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.
Freddie Manners, of Packwood Haugh School in Shropshire solved an alphanumeric without using the extra information supplied and this article explains his reasoning.
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. . . .
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and inequalities.
Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.
How many tours visit each vertex of a cube once and only once? How many return to the starting point?
Toni Beardon has chosen this article introducing a rich area for practical exploration and discovery in 3D geometry
An article which gives an account of some properties of magic squares.
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)
Relate these algebraic expressions to geometrical diagrams.
Can you find the value of this function involving algebraic fractions for x=2000?
Draw a 'doodle' - a closed intersecting curve drawn without taking pencil from paper. What can you prove about the intersections?
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. . . .
Sort these mathematical propositions into a series of 8 correct statements.
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. . . .
Which of these roads will satisfy a Munchkin builder?
Have a go at being mathematically negative, by negating these statements.
Explore a number pattern which has the same symmetries in different bases.
Starting with one of the mini-challenges, how many of the other mini-challenges will you invent for yourself?
Given that u>0 and v>0 find the smallest possible value of 1/u + 1/v given that u + v = 5 by different methods.
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.
A polite number can be written as the sum of two or more consecutive positive integers. Find the consecutive sums giving the polite numbers 544 and 424. What characterizes impolite numbers?
I want some cubes painted with three blue faces and three red faces. How many different cubes can be painted like that?
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.
Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
Find all positive integers a and b for which the two equations: x^2-ax+b = 0 and x^2-bx+a = 0 both have positive integer solutions.
To find the integral of a polynomial, evaluate it at some special points and add multiples of these values.