Can you find a way of counting the spheres in these arrangements?
Delight your friends with this cunning trick! Can you explain how it works?
Here are some arrangements of circles. How many circles would I need to make the next size up for each? Can you create your own arrangement and investigate the number of circles it needs?
Try entering different sets of numbers in the number pyramids. How does the total at the top change?
This task encourages you to investigate the number of edging pieces and panes in different sized windows.
Can you explain how this card trick works?
Think of a number, square it and subtract your starting number. Is the number you’re left with odd or even? How do the images help to explain this?
Can you dissect an equilateral triangle into 6 smaller ones? What number of smaller equilateral triangles is it NOT possible to dissect a larger equilateral triangle into?
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or subtract consecutive negative numbers?
Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?
In each of the pictures the invitation is for you to: Count what you see. Identify how you think the pattern would continue.
Are these statements relating to odd and even numbers always true, sometimes true or never true?
Find a route from the outside to the inside of this square, stepping on as many tiles as possible.
Watch this animation. What do you see? Can you explain why this happens?
Rectangles are considered different if they vary in size or have different locations. How many different rectangles can be drawn on a chessboard?
Imagine an infinitely large sheet of square dotty paper on which you can draw triangles of any size you wish (providing each vertex is on a dot). What areas is it/is it not possible to draw?
A game for 2 players. Set out 16 counters in rows of 1,3,5 and 7. Players take turns to remove any number of counters from a row. The player left with the last counter looses.
Triangular numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?
Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?
One block is needed to make an up-and-down staircase, with one step up and one step down. How many blocks would be needed to build an up-and-down staircase with 5 steps up and 5 steps down?
How many moves does it take to swap over some red and blue frogs? Do you have a method?
Euler discussed whether or not it was possible to stroll around Koenigsberg crossing each of its seven bridges exactly once. Experiment with different numbers of islands and bridges.
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.
If you can copy a network without lifting your pen off the paper and without drawing any line twice, then it is traversable. Decide which of these diagrams are traversable.
An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.
In this problem we are looking at sets of parallel sticks that cross each other. What is the least number of crossings you can make? And the greatest?
When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...
Imagine starting with one yellow cube and covering it all over with a single layer of red cubes, and then covering that cube with a layer of blue cubes. How many red and blue cubes would you need?
We can show that (x + 1)² = x² + 2x + 1 by considering the area of an (x + 1) by (x + 1) square. Show in a similar way that (x + 2)² = x² + 4x + 4
How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there are in different sized boxes?
It starts quite simple but great opportunities for number discoveries and patterns!
This challenge asks you to imagine a snake coiling on itself.
Can you describe this route to infinity? Where will the arrows take you next?
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
Nim-7 game for an adult and child. Who will be the one to take the last counter?
Make some loops out of regular hexagons. What rules can you discover?
These squares have been made from Cuisenaire rods. Can you describe the pattern? What would the next square look like?
A game for 2 players with similarities to NIM. Place one counter on each spot on the games board. Players take it is turns to remove 1 or 2 adjacent counters. The winner picks up the last counter.
You can work out the number someone else is thinking of as follows. Ask a friend to think of any natural number less than 100. Then ask them to tell you the remainders when this number is divided by. . . .
How can you arrange these 10 matches in four piles so that when you move one match from three of the piles into the fourth, you end up with the same arrangement?
A 2 by 3 rectangle contains 8 squares and a 3 by 4 rectangle contains 20 squares. What size rectangle(s) contain(s) exactly 100 squares? Can you find them all?
Draw a square. A second square of the same size slides around the first always maintaining contact and keeping the same orientation. How far does the dot travel?
Can you work out how to win this game of Nim? Does it matter if you go first or second?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind maths trails.
Watch this film carefully. Can you find a general rule for explaining when the dot will be this same distance from the horizontal axis?
Take a counter and surround it by a ring of other counters that MUST touch two others. How many are needed?
The number of plants in Mr McGregor's magic potting shed increases overnight. He'd like to put the same number of plants in each of his gardens, planting one garden each day. How can he do it?
What would be the smallest number of moves needed to move a Knight from a chess set from one corner to the opposite corner of a 99 by 99 square board?
Can all unit fractions be written as the sum of two unit fractions?
The Egyptians expressed all fractions as the sum of different unit fractions. Here is a chance to explore how they could have written different fractions.