Resources tagged with: Generalising

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Broad Topics > Thinking Mathematically > Generalising

Special Sums and Products

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Find some examples of pairs of numbers such that their sum is a factor of their product. eg. 4 + 12 = 16 and 4 × 12 = 48 and 16 is a factor of 48.

Sum Equals Product

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

The sum of the numbers 4 and 1 [1/3] is the same as the product of 4 and 1 [1/3]; that is to say 4 + 1 [1/3] = 4 � 1 [1/3]. What other numbers have the sum equal to the product and can this be so. . . .

Lower Bound

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

What would you get if you continued this sequence of fraction sums? 1/2 + 2/1 = 2/3 + 3/2 = 3/4 + 4/3 =

Harmonic Triangle

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Can you see how to build a harmonic triangle? Can you work out the next two rows?

Semi-square

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

What is the ratio of the area of a square inscribed in a semicircle to the area of the square inscribed in the entire circle?

Chocolate 2010

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

First of all, pick the number of times a week that you would like to eat chocolate. Multiply this number by 2...

Egyptian Fractions

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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.

Keep it Simple

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can all unit fractions be written as the sum of two unit fractions?

Nim

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single pile. The loser is the player who takes the last counter.

Nim-like Games

Age 7 to 16 Challenge Level:

A collection of games on the NIM theme

Sums of Pairs

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

Jo has three numbers which she adds together in pairs. When she does this she has three different totals: 11, 17 and 22 What are the three numbers Jo had to start with?”

Janine's Conjecture

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Polycircles

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Show that for any triangle it is always possible to construct 3 touching circles with centres at the vertices. Is it possible to construct touching circles centred at the vertices of any polygon?

Card Trick 2

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you explain how this card trick works?

Pair Products

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Choose four consecutive whole numbers. Multiply the first and last numbers together. Multiply the middle pair together. What do you notice?

How Much Can We Spend?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

A country has decided to have just two different coins, 3z and 5z coins. Which totals can be made? Is there a largest total that cannot be made? How do you know?

Multiplication Square

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

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

Odd Differences

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

The diagram illustrates the formula: 1 + 3 + 5 + ... + (2n - 1) = n² Use the diagram to show that any odd number is the difference of two squares.

Mind Reading

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Think of a number, add one, double it, take away 3, add the number you first thought of, add 7, divide by 3 and take away the number you first thought of. You should now be left with 2. How do I. . . .

Regular Hexagon Loops

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Make some loops out of regular hexagons. What rules can you discover?

What's Possible?

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Many numbers can be expressed as the difference of two perfect squares. What do you notice about the numbers you CANNOT make?

All Tangled Up

Age 14 to 18 Challenge Level:

Can you tangle yourself up and reach any fraction?

Arithmagons

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

Can you find the values at the vertices when you know the values on the edges?

Beach Huts

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you figure out how sequences of beach huts are generated?

Repeaters

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Choose any 3 digits and make a 6 digit number by repeating the 3 digits in the same order (e.g. 594594). Explain why whatever digits you choose the number will always be divisible by 7, 11 and 13.

More Twisting and Turning

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

It would be nice to have a strategy for disentangling any tangled ropes...

Pinned Squares

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

What is the total number of squares that can be made on a 5 by 5 geoboard?

Plus Minus

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Can you explain the surprising results Jo found when she calculated the difference between square numbers?

Three Times Seven

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

A three digit number abc is always divisible by 7 when 2a+3b+c is divisible by 7. Why?

Adding in Rows

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

List any 3 numbers. It is always possible to find a subset of adjacent numbers that add up to a multiple of 3. Can you explain why and prove it?

Multiplication Arithmagons

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Can you find the values at the vertices when you know the values on the edges of these multiplication arithmagons?

Number Pyramids

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Try entering different sets of numbers in the number pyramids. How does the total at the top change?

Gnomon Dimensions

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

These gnomons appear to have more than a passing connection with the Fibonacci sequence. This problem ask you to investigate some of these connections.

Chocolate Maths

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Building Gnomons

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Build gnomons that are related to the Fibonacci sequence and try to explain why this is possible.

Mini-max

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Consider all two digit numbers (10, 11, . . . ,99). In writing down all these numbers, which digits occur least often, and which occur most often ? What about three digit numbers, four digit numbers. . . .

What Numbers Can We Make Now?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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

Mindreader

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Pareq Calc

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Triangle ABC is an equilateral triangle with three parallel lines going through the vertices. Calculate the length of the sides of the triangle if the perpendicular distances between the parallel. . . .

Frogs

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

How many moves does it take to swap over some red and blue frogs? Do you have a method?

Go Forth and Generalise

Age 11 to 14

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.

Winning Lines

Age 7 to 16

An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.

Tilted Squares

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

It's easy to work out the areas of most squares that we meet, but what if they were tilted?

Seven Squares - Group-worthy Task

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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?

Tourism

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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.

Jam

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A game for 2 players

Take Three from Five

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

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?

Konigsberg Plus

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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.

Got It

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

A game for two people, or play online. Given a target number, say 23, and a range of numbers to choose from, say 1-4, players take it in turns to add to the running total to hit their target.

Consecutive Negative Numbers

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or subtract consecutive negative numbers?