Andrew decorated 20 biscuits to take to a party. He lined them up and put icing on every second biscuit and different decorations on other biscuits. How many biscuits weren't decorated?
You can make a calculator count for you by any number you choose.
You can count by ones to reach 24. You can count by twos to reach
24. What else can you count by to reach 24?
Find the squares that Froggie skips onto to get to the pumpkin
patch. She starts on 3 and finishes on 30, but she lands only on a
square that has a number 3 more than the square she skips from.
If you are a teacher, click here for a version of the problem suitable for classroom use, together with supporting materials. Otherwise, read on ...
Frances and Rishi were given a bag of lollies.
They shared them out evenly and had one left over.
Just as they had finished sharing them their friends Kishan, Hayley and Paul came along. They wanted some lollies too so the children shared them out again between all of them. This time they had two lollies left over.
How many lollies could there have been in the bag?
Once you've had a chance to think about it, click below to see how three different groups of pupils began working on the task.
Sarah, Danielle and Sally said:
We also notice that $7$ works and $27$ works, as well as $107$."
Poppy began like this:
If the two children end up with one lolly it must be an odd number of lollies. Then three more children come making the total number of children $5$. Say they had $1$ lolly each when they shared them, the number of lollies would be $7$ because $1$ times $5$ is $5$ add on $2$ for the left over ones and it makes seven. If we carry this on to $10$ lollies each it shows:
Here is the start of Phoebe and Alice's work:
Can you take each of these starting ideas and develop it into a solution?
Give the class a few minutes to consider, individually, how they might go about tackling the problem, then pair them up and suggest that they talk to their partner about their ideas so far. Try to stand back and observe, and resist the temptation to make helpful suggestions!
Allow pairs to work on the task so that you feel they have made some progress, but do not worry if they have not completed it or if they report being stuck. The aim at this stage is for everyone to 'get into' the problem and work hard on trying to solve it, but not necessarily to achieve a final solution.
At a suitable time, hand out this (doc, pdf) to pairs. Suggest to the class that when they've finished or can't make
any further progress, they should look at the sheet showing three approaches used by children working on this task. Pose the question, "What might each do next? Can you take each of their starting ideas and develop them into a solution?". You may like pairs to record their work on large sheets of paper, which might be more easily shared with the rest of the class in the
Allow at least fifteen minutes for a final discussion. Invite some pairs to explain how the three different methods might be continued. You may find that some members of the class used completely different approaches when they worked on the task to begin with, so ask them to share their methods too. You can then facilitate a discussion about the advantages and disadvantages
of each. Which way would they choose to use if they were presented with a similar task in the future? Why?