The rest of Maths Week was spent doing fun things like puzzles, mazes, tangrams etc.
One such maze called “No Left Turn Maze” only allows right turns. (You are not allowed to turn around fully or go backwards). It drove the class mad. The level of competitiveness in the classroom rose dramatically with the prize of a “night off homework” if they could complete the maze.
This maze can be found on www.mathsweek.ie/2012/puzzles/maths-mazes (and the solution too!).
Another day the pupils were challenged to make specific designs out of tangram shapes. These puzzles can be found on www.puzzles.com/PuzzlePlayground. The sections we looked at were “The Crossbreaker” and “The Zero Puzzle”. Some pupils clicked very quickly what to do, others were pulling their hair out. But there was a lot of fun and a lot of talk as the pupils helped each other to make the shapes.
This site, www.puzzles.com/PuzzlePlayground is a site we will be visiting many times in the coming year. It has got loads of puzzles, some use coins and matchsticks, others are tricks or illusions, some involve counting hidden shapes, others need logic , some are interactive.
“The Square Top Table” is a good interactive game to try both at school and at home. It was one that our grandparents used to play. You have to fit 8 pieces of irregular shapes in to a 6×6 table top, so they fit perfectly. the pieces can be turned and rotated. Happy puzzling !
The Crossbreaker and The Zero Puzzle