What two-digit numbers can you make with these two dice? What can't you make?
How could you put these three beads into bags? How many different ways can you do it? How could you record what you've done?
In the multiplication calculation, some of the digits have been replaced by letters and others by asterisks. Can you reconstruct the original multiplication?
Can you work out some different ways to balance this equation?
Have a go at balancing this equation. Can you find different ways of doing it?
Can you complete this calculation by filling in the missing numbers? In how many different ways can you do it?
This multiplication uses each of the digits 0 - 9 once and once only. Using the information given, can you replace the stars in the calculation with figures?
Can you find the chosen number from the grid using the clues?
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other
numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
Can you replace the letters with numbers? Is there only one
solution in each case?
Nina must cook some pasta for 15 minutes but she only has a 7-minute sand-timer and an 11-minute sand-timer. How can she use these timers to measure exactly 15 minutes?
Suppose we allow ourselves to use three numbers less than 10 and
multiply them together. How many different products can you find?
How do you know you've got them all?
Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none
can capture any of the others.
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive
numbers are joined by a line.
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so
that you have double the number.
You cannot choose a selection of ice cream flavours that includes
totally what someone has already chosen. Have a go and find all the
different ways in which seven children can have ice cream.
Stuart's watch loses two minutes every hour. Adam's watch gains one
minute every hour. Use the information to work out what time (the
real time) they arrived at the airport.
Can you find which shapes you need to put into the grid to make the
totals at the end of each row and the bottom of each column?
If you put three beads onto a tens/ones abacus you could make the
numbers 3, 30, 12 or 21. What numbers can be made with six beads?
Can you fill in this table square? The numbers 2 -12 were used to generate it with just one number used twice.
When you throw two regular, six-faced dice you have more chance of getting one particular result than any other. What result would that be? Why is this?
Can you order the digits from 1-6 to make a number which is
divisible by 6 so when the last digit is removed it becomes a
5-figure number divisible by 5, and so on?
In how many ways could Mrs Beeswax put ten coins into her three
puddings so that each pudding ended up with at least two coins?
Moira is late for school. What is the shortest route she can take from the school gates to the entrance?
A merchant brings four bars of gold to a jeweller. How can the
jeweller use the scales just twice to identify the lighter, fake
This magic square has operations written in it, to make it into a
maze. Start wherever you like, go through every cell and go out a
total of 15!
How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one
layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same
colour are next to each other in any direction?
How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are
four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can
you find all the ways of doing this?
Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can
Choose four different digits from 1-9 and put one in each box so that the resulting four two-digit numbers add to a total of 100.
Can you work out the arrangement of the digits in the square so
that the given products are correct? The numbers 1 - 9 may be used
once and once only.
Using all ten cards from 0 to 9, rearrange them to make five prime
numbers. Can you find any other ways of doing it?
Add the sum of the squares of four numbers between 10 and 20 to the
sum of the squares of three numbers less than 6 to make the square
of another, larger, number.
What could the half time scores have been in these Olympic hockey
Have a go at this well-known challenge. Can you swap the frogs and toads in as few slides and jumps as possible?
Can you substitute numbers for the letters in these sums?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.
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?
These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so working in a systematic way will ensure none are left out.
In this problem it is not the squares that jump, you do the jumping! The idea is to go round the track in as few jumps as possible.
My cube has inky marks on each face. Can you find the route it has
taken? What does each face look like?
In the planet system of Octa the planets are arranged in the shape
of an octahedron. How many different routes could be taken to get
from Planet A to Planet Zargon?
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
There are 4 jugs which hold 9 litres, 7 litres, 4 litres and 2
litres. Find a way to pour 9 litres of drink from one jug to
another until you are left with exactly 3 litres in three of the
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the
clues to work out which name goes with each face.
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat?
How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
Ten cards are put into five envelopes so that there are two cards in each envelope. The sum of the numbers inside it is written on each envelope. What numbers could be inside the envelopes?
This challenge is to design different step arrangements, which must
go along a distance of 6 on the steps and must end up at 6 high.