Playing with Sequences
This activity includes two short spreadsheet tasks on sequences. These can be used to help pupils generate rules and predict terms.

The activities are:
  • Think of a number: an activity that encourages pupils to explore algebraically how the puzzles work.
  • Sequences from two numbers: a series of sequences produced from two numbers where pupils need to predict the 10th and nth terms.
Year 7 Objectives covered:
  • Understand that algebraic operations follow the rules of arithmetic
Year 8 Objectives covered:
  • Generate terms of a linear sequence using term-to-term and position-to-term rules, on paper and using a spreadsheet or graphics calculator
  • Use linear expressions to describe the terms of a simple arithmetic sequence, justifying its form by referring to the activity or practical context from which it was generated
Spreadsheets allow us to quickly make calculations, and to change a question while the solution is hidden. These two simple ideas could be starting points for small investigations, or could lead onto further work. The activities have opportunities for whole class teaching, discussion and reflection and pupil predictions and testing of those predictions.

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