Resources tagged with: Generalising

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Broad Topics > Thinking Mathematically > Generalising

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?

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?

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.

What Numbers Can We Make?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Imagine we have four bags containing a large number of 1s, 4s, 7s and 10s. What numbers can we make?

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?

One O Five

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

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.

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?

Plus Minus

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

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

Great Granddad

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Great Granddad is very proud of his telegram from the Queen congratulating him on his hundredth birthday and he has friends who are even older than he is... When was he born?

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?”

Nim-like Games

Age 7 to 16 Challenge Level:

A collection of games on the NIM theme

Neighbourly Addition

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

I added together some of my neighbours' house numbers. Can you explain the patterns I noticed?

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?

Have You Got It?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?

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. . . .

Where Can We Visit?

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

Charlie and Abi put a counter on 42. They wondered if they could visit all the other numbers on their 1-100 board, moving the counter using just these two operations: x2 and -5. What do you think?

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.

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.

Regular Hexagon Loops

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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

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?

Charitable Pennies

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different ways that fifteen schools could have given money in a charity fundraiser.

Elevenses

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?

Beelines

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Is there a relationship between the coordinates of the endpoints of a line and the number of grid squares it crosses?

Got it for Two

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?

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. . . .

Train Spotters' Paradise

Age 11 to 16

Dave Hewitt suggests that there might be more to mathematics than looking at numerical results, finding patterns and generalising.

Sliding Puzzle

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of moves.

One, Three, Five, Seven

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

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.

Keep it Simple

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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

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.

Partitioning Revisited

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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

AMGM

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Can you use the diagram to prove the AM-GM inequality?

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?

More Number Pyramids

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...

Games Related to Nim

Age 5 to 16

This article for teachers describes several games, found on the site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to develop the skills of strategic planning.

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?

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.

Arithmagons

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

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

Winning Lines

Age 7 to 16

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

Beach Huts

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

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

Jam

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

A game for 2 players

Tower of Hanoi

Age 11 to 14 Challenge Level:

The Tower of Hanoi is an ancient mathematical challenge. Working on the building blocks may help you to explain the patterns 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?

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. . . .

Make 37

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

Four bags contain a large number of 1s, 3s, 5s and 7s. Pick any ten numbers from the bags above so that their total is 37.

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?

Generating Triples

Age 14 to 16 Challenge Level:

Sets of integers like 3, 4, 5 are called Pythagorean Triples, because they could be the lengths of the sides of a right-angled triangle. Can you find any more?

Nim-7

Age 5 to 14 Challenge Level:

Can you work out how to win this game of Nim? Does it matter if you go first or second?

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. . . .