This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which to help children become better at working systematically.
The idea of this game is to add or subtract the two numbers on the dice and cover the result on the grid, trying to get a line of three. Are there some numbers that are good to aim for?
Arrange 9 red cubes, 9 blue cubes and 9 yellow cubes into a large 3 by 3 cube. No row or column of cubes must contain two cubes of the same colour.
A game for 2 people. Take turns placing a counter on the star. You win when you have completed a line of 3 in your colour.
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
Start with three pairs of socks. Now mix them up so that no
mismatched pair is the same as another mismatched pair. Is there
more than one way to do it?
There are nine teddies in Teddy Town - three red, three blue and three yellow. There are also nine houses, three of each colour. Can you put them on the map of Teddy Town according to the rules?
Place the 16 different combinations of cup/saucer in this 4 by 4 arrangement so that no row or column contains more than one cup or saucer of the same colour.
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
Place the numbers 1 to 6 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four
calculations are correct?
Can you find all the different triangles on these peg boards, and
find their angles?
Have a go at this well-known challenge. Can you swap the frogs and toads in as few slides and jumps as possible?
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of
Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire
Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no
consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?
This problem is based on a code using two different prime numbers
less than 10. You'll need to multiply them together and shift the
alphabet forwards by the result. Can you decipher the code?
Imagine that the puzzle pieces of a jigsaw are roughly a
rectangular shape and all the same size. How many different puzzle
pieces could there be?
Can you work out how to balance this equaliser? You can put more
than one weight on a hook.
You have 4 red and 5 blue counters. How many ways can they be
placed on a 3 by 3 grid so that all the rows columns and diagonals
have an even number of red counters?
Try out the lottery that is played in a far-away land. What is the
chance of winning?
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
Can you find out in which order the children are standing in this
This cube has ink on each face which leaves marks on paper as it is rolled. Can you work out what is on each face and the route it has taken?
Moira is late for school. What is the shortest route she can take from the school gates to the entrance?
Seven friends went to a fun fair with lots of scary rides. They
decided to pair up for rides until each friend had ridden once with
each of the others. What was the total number rides?
Use the information to describe these marbles. What colours must be
on marbles that sparkle when rolling but are dark inside?
How many different triangles can you draw on the dotty grid which each have one dot in the middle?
Find all the numbers that can be made by adding the dots on two dice.
Can you make a train the same length as Laura's but using three differently coloured rods? Is there only one way of doing it?
Can you fill in the empty boxes in the grid with the right shape
There is a long tradition of creating mazes throughout history and across the world. This article gives details of mazes you can visit and those that you can tackle on paper.
Can you cover the camel with these pieces?
Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these
mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.
What happens when you try and fit the triomino pieces into these
In this town, houses are built with one room for each person. There
are some families of seven people living in the town. In how many
different ways can they build their houses?
El Crico the cricket has to cross a square patio to get home. He
can jump the length of one tile, two tiles and three tiles. Can you
find a path that would get El Crico home in three jumps?
How many different ways can you find to join three equilateral
triangles together? Can you convince us that you have found them
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the
month from the 1st to the 31st.
My briefcase has a three-number combination lock, but I have
forgotten the combination. I remember that there's a 3, a 5 and an
8. How many possible combinations are there to try?
What do the numbers shaded in blue on this hundred square have in common? What do you notice about the pink numbers? How about the shaded numbers in the other squares?
Ben and his mum are planting garlic. Use the interactivity to help
you find out how many cloves of garlic they might have had.
Chandra, Jane, Terry and Harry ordered their lunches from the
sandwich shop. Use the information below to find out who ordered
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules,
to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.
Use the clues to find out who's who in the family, to fill in the family tree and to find out which of the family members are mathematicians and which are not.
Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can
A package contains a set of resources designed to develop
students’ mathematical thinking. This package places a
particular emphasis on “being systematic” and is
designed to meet. . . .
How many different triangles can you make on a circular pegboard that has nine pegs?