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.
Relate these algebraic expressions to geometrical diagrams.
Show that for natural numbers x and y if x/y > 1 then x/y>(x+1)/(y+1}>1. Hence prove that the product for i=1 to n of [(2i)/(2i-1)] tends to infinity as n tends to infinity.
Take any two numbers between 0 and 1. Prove that the sum of the numbers is always less than one plus their product?
The sum of any two of the numbers 2, 34 and 47 is a perfect square. Choose three square numbers and find sets of three integers with this property. Generalise to four integers.
To find the integral of a polynomial, evaluate it at some special points and add multiples of these values.
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.
These proofs are wrong. Can you see why?
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?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
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.
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.
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. . . .
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.
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?
By considering powers of (1+x), show that the sum of the squares of the binomial coefficients from 0 to n is 2nCn
Some diagrammatic 'proofs' of algebraic identities and inequalities.
Professor Korner has generously supported school mathematics for more than 30 years and has been a good friend to NRICH since it started.
Find the positive integer solutions of the equation (1+1/a)(1+1/b)(1+1/c) = 2
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.
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.
Can you find the value of this function involving algebraic fractions for x=2000?
Eulerian and Hamiltonian circuits are defined with some simple examples and a couple of puzzles to illustrate Hamiltonian circuits.
If x + y = -1 find the largest value of xy by coordinate geometry, by calculus and by algebra.
Find all the solutions to the this equation.
Can you invert the logic to prove these statements?
Freddie Manners, of Packwood Haugh School in Shropshire solved an alphanumeric without using the extra information supplied and this article explains his reasoning.
A, B & C own a half, a third and a sixth of a coin collection. Each grab some coins, return some, then share equally what they had put back, finishing with their own share. How rich are they?
Which of these roads will satisfy a Munchkin builder?
If you think that mathematical proof is really clearcut and universal then you should read this article.
Take a complicated fraction with the product of five quartics top and bottom and reduce this to a whole number. This is a numerical example involving some clever algebra.
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. . . .
The nth term of a sequence is given by the formula n^3 + 11n . Find the first four terms of the sequence given by this formula and the first term of the sequence which is bigger than one million. . . .
When if ever do you get the right answer if you add two fractions by adding the numerators and adding the denominators?
Follow the hints and prove Pick's Theorem.
Starting with one of the mini-challenges, how many of the other mini-challenges will you invent for yourself?
Have a go at being mathematically negative, by negating these statements.
A point moves around inside a rectangle. What are the least and the greatest values of the sum of the squares of the distances from the vertices?
Can you rearrange the cards to make a series of correct mathematical statements?
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.
Sort these mathematical propositions into a series of 8 correct statements.
Can you work through these direct proofs, using our interactive proof sorters?
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?
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.
An inequality involving integrals of squares of functions.
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.
The twelve edge totals of a standard six-sided die are distributed symmetrically. Will the same symmetry emerge with a dodecahedral die?
Explore a number pattern which has the same symmetries in different bases.
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. . . .
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. . . .