Tag Archives: math

Pushing the Sudoku Boundaries!

16 Dec

Try these numberloving favourites!

I was first introduced to Sudoku as a NQT ten years ago and found this puzzle right up my street. I am sure many of you know how to complete a Sudoku puzzle, this article concentrates on puzzles beyond the basic Sudoku. For beginners click here for hints and tips on the classic puzzle.

So what happens when you breeze through [most] sudoku challenges found in newspapers and magazines alike? Or you maybe simply looking for a new logic challenge! Well I recommend the samurai Sudoku. As you can see this joins five classic sudoku to get your brains really working.

Click here for a daily samurai Sudoku, or tap into its archives and puzzles can be printed (myself I prefer to print as a break from the computer). Or there are many books like The Times Samurai Su Doku available through online bookstores.

Way beyond the classic Sudoku is Kuboku a 3D Sudoku cube game created by Creaceed this app, available for £1.49 (at time of publishing). The video below gives a demonstration of Kuboku, don’t forget you get extra Kuboku points if you can complete it faster. You will be interested to know there is no sound in the game, unlike the video!

For a 3D Sudoku in 2D try this flip pad, also known as Tredoku. Tredoku keeps to the same rules as classic Sudoku with the added dimensions or corners which need to be considered whilst completing. Some printable Tredoku available here.

Also don’t forget killer Sudoku, in this game not only do the digits 1-9 have to be placed in the same way as classic Sudoku but you are only given guidance on the total of groups of numbers. Therefore knowing combinations of digits for a given total is helpful. This is an example of one online playing site, there are many available. I use that particular site as its archives are easy to navigate.

New to myself, and frustratingly yet to fully master is the greater than and less than Sudoku, as shown on the right. Again the ultimate goal of placing digits 1 to 9 are the same, however the only hints you are given are the inequalities < or >. I found A day in the Life‘s blog helpful and need to dedicate time to completing one of these over the Christmas break. Play online here, or some print and play here.

The Bermuda Triangle Sudoku game, is a nice twist, with triangle placement of the digits 1-9 as well as colour coordination. Luckily the sound can be muted once the game has begun by clicking on the word sound in the top left corner.

Many of these variations named above are available online, or as a downloadable app for those with a smartphone and on the move. Here is a list of recommended websites for Sudoku. If you have an favourites to add to the list please your comment, authors of Numberloving are always looking for a new puzzle challenge!

Merry Christmas!

Numberloving does not endorse any product or site, we merely blogging about our favourites. There are of course other sites/books/sellers to get these services.

Your Christmas Reading List!

15 Dec

I can’t think of anything better than cuddling up in the holidays with a good book (about Maths of course). Here are Number Loving’s top holiday reads:

1. If the world were a village by David J. Smith is a fascinating account of what the world’s population would be like if it were scaled down to a village of 100 people. You are told so many facts about their ethnic origin, education, standard of living and more, making this a brilliant book to bring out when doing statistics or proportion. It also brings in global issues, for example 17 people in the village can not read and write, what is this as a fraction? or a percentage? if there are 7 billion people in the world how many can not read and write? You can generate endless questions with a sense of importance about them.

2. Addition by Toni Jordan is a fictional comedy about a fellow Maths obsessive, it is really funny and has some nice Maths references

3. Origami Fun Kit for Beginners by Dover is a great introduction to origami, students absolutely adore to do this and it brings in so much Maths in terms of shapes, fractions, angles, estimating, … the list goes on. It is well worth learning a few simple ones to bring out as a fun starter.

4. Conned Again Watson: Cautionary Tales of Logic, Math and Probability by Colin Bruce is a brilliant account of twelve Sherlock Holmes mysteries which all bring in elements of statistics and game theory, I have taken much inspiration from the stories in this book.

5. Professor Stewart’s Cabinet of Mathematical Curiosities by Ian Stewart is a fabulous collection of interesting Mathematical happenings, you can dip in and out of the book and I must have got at least 20 starters and plenaries from ideas in here, there are a few in the series and all are worth a good read. There are quite a lot of books like this on the market but this is definitely one of the best.

6. Secrets and Mince Pies by Craig Barton is a very funny fictional book, written by the ever popular Mr Barton it charts the run up to Christmas of a typical family making it seasonal too, recommended to all but especially number lovers. And what is even better is that it’s available on the Kindle for less than £2!

7. Alex’s Adventures in Numberland by Alex Bellos is a brilliant book charting the travels of Alex Bellos as he jaunts around the globe, there are some real gems in here which will inspire lots of engaging starters for your lessons

8. A brief Guide to the Great Equations by Robert Crease is a stunning book, it describes the ten most beautiful equations and the story behind their conception. Of course it includes Euler’s equation but the other nine are equally brilliant. This is an absolute must read for any A-level Maths teachers to help put some history and beauty into your lessons. Or for any Maths lovers for some self-indulgence!

Happy reading and Merry Christmas from Number Loving!

Carpet Constructions

26 Oct

Bringing ‘Old School’ into new school

So every store cupboard has them, the yellow ‘old school’ construction equipment.

Bring this old school equipment back to life by allowing pupils to graffiti the carpet with maths! I couldn’t think of more beautiful art work.

Pupils can construct bisectors, triangles, regular polygons, angles, using the equipment and some chalk (easily brushes off). Alternatively this can be done in the playground.

Not only do pupils enjoy this but it actually helps pupils who struggle with their fine motor skills.

The uses of chalk are endless; completing a venn diagram on the floor, drawing 2D shapes and labelling as much as they can (equal lengths, parallel sides). Write the answer 5, ask the pupils to come up with as many questions as they can that equal 5. Basically using chalk will hook pupils into doing anything you would do with pen and paper!

If you try it I would love to hear how it goes. Good luck! Get in touch @numberloving

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