## Times Tables and Prime Numbers (3) |

I don’t know about you, but writing all this stuff to help you with your times tables and, I hope, lots of other interesting mathematical ideas too, is really doing my head in. But it’s so exciting and here’s another idea worth looking at. My favourite topic in mathematics has to be prime numbers – I just love them. Had you guessed. The reason I love them so much, I think, is that they break all the rules. In mathematics we are always looking for patterns of one sort or another, but prime numbers don’t seem to have many rules, unlike the times tables. In fact, they are like the numbers left over when all the rules have been made. They are the ones that the rules You can get a flavour of this by thinking about the Sieve of Eratosthenes. All the multiples of Well, you can imagine that one of the things mathematicians have tried to do is to produce a formula that will give you just prime numbers and no others, just like the formula: You will need to have done a bit of algebra to do this work, but it is not too difficult if you have. Let’s begin with this formula: Try putting Let’s try In fact, for the first
Here is another formula:
When Again, which is the first number for I hope you have lots of fun investigating these. |