How this book works In How to be a Maths Whizz, you will learn how to think and act like a mathematician. The book is packed with fun activities, important topics, and people who have used their maths skills to do amazing things.
Awesome activities Learn on the job with the activities throughout this book, which show key ideas within maths. There are also crafts to make maths devices, such as an abacus, and memory aids that help you remember important facts.
Safety first All of the projects in this book should be done with care. If you see this symbol at the top of a page, it means that you will need an adult to help you with the activity.
Getting ready You can do many of the activities in this book straight away. Rummage around at home to see if you can gather the items you need. Here are instructions on how to use some of the most important maths tools you’ll need.
Calculators Calculators help us to work out sums quickly. To use one, press the buttons that show the numbers and symbols in a sum, in order. Then, press the “=” button to show the answer.
If you look closely, there’s maths involved with how food looks, the way it’s made, and in sharing it out. From making recipes to describing the shape of your favourite snack, learn to see the maths behind the food on your plate.
Counting You’ve probably been counting since you were little. It’s a simple way of finding how many of something you have.
Everyday life is full of counting. If you want to give each of your friends an orange, you’d count the oranges up. You’d need to count a lot more pieces of food if you were giving one to everybody in your school!
Rotating starfish Rotate this book and you can see it change position. However, some shapes look the same when they’re rotated. They have what we call “rotational symmetry”.
The number of positions in which a shape looks the same are called its order of rotational symmetry.
Imagine a 3D shape unfolding into a flat shape. This is called the shape’s net. Use the nets on pages 62–65 to make building blocks for your own city.
You could make all the differently shaped buildings you see in a real city – including homes, schools, museums, and much more!
Buildings From your own home to churches and museums, buildings of all shapes and sizes are everywhere you look. Architects, who come up with ideas for buildings,
use measurements and shapes to design them. Maths is also what holds a building up! The strength and size of each part has to be worked out.
Aroundthe world The shape of a building or bridge can be linked to a place or a period in history. Ancient Roman buildings often feature arches.
Religious buildings can also have distinct shapes. Christian churches often sport pointed cones called spires, and Muslim mosques can have towers called minarets.
Division Splitting things into equal amounts is called division. The number you divide by is the number of equal parts you are splitting something into. So if you divide something by three, you’re breaking it into three equal amounts.
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