What lies beneath
In this spreadsheet-based activity, the screen displays a small ‘window’ onto just a few cells from a larger number square below. Pupils make conjectures about ‘what lies beneath’ from the limited information that the window provides. The window can be moved to expand the information available and conjectures can be tested and amended. There are nine different grids to choose from ranging in challenge from very straightforward patterns to quite complex one along with a few ‘red herrings’ along the way.

This activity is designed to be suitable for Year 7 although teachers might want to adapt it for other year groups. It can help pupils to address the following Year 7 objectives:
  • Classify and visualise properties and patterns
  • Generalise in simple cases by working logically
  • Draw simple conclusions and explain reasoning
  • Understand the significance of a counter-example
  • Take account of feedback and learn from mistakes
This activity will help pupils to develop problem solving skills and provides the opportunity to explore mathematical reasoning and argument. It might be used as a stand-alone starter or as part of a lesson exploring number patterns, sequences or series. You may find it helpful to look at the short video of a teacher using the software as part of a lesson

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