Use the information to describe these marbles. What colours must be
on marbles that sparkle when rolling but are dark inside?
This challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
This article for teachers describes several games, found on the
site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to
develop the skills of strategic planning.
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.
Can you find out in which order the children are standing in this
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat?
How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
Two children made up a game as they walked along the garden paths.
Can you find out their scores? Can you find some paths of your own?
Moira is late for school. What is the shortest route she can take from the school gates to the entrance?
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
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.
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?
Let's suppose that you are going to have a magazine which has 16
pages of A5 size. Can you find some different ways to make these
pages? Investigate the pattern for each if you number the pages.
Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
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?
A challenging activity focusing on finding all possible ways of stacking rods.
Lorenzie was packing his bag for a school trip. He packed four
shirts and three pairs of pants. "I will be able to have a
different outfit each day", he said. How many days will Lorenzie be
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
Use the clues about the symmetrical properties of these letters to
place them on the grid.
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons
together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
What is the greatest number of counters you can place on the grid below without four of them lying at the corners of a square?
Systematically explore the range of symmetric designs that can be
created by shading parts of the motif below. Use normal square
lattice paper to record your results.
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?
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?
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
This activity investigates how you might make squares and pentominoes from Polydron.
Chandra, Jane, Terry and Harry ordered their lunches from the
sandwich shop. Use the information below to find out who ordered
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?
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?
Ben and his mum are planting garlic. Use the interactivity to help
you find out how many cloves of garlic they might have had.
Move from the START to the FINISH by moving across or down to the
next square. Can you find a route to make these totals?
Frances and Rishi were given a bag of lollies. They shared them out evenly and had one left over. How many lollies could there have been in the bag?
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of
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.
Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems
give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical
concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
Can you see who the gold medal winner is? What about the silver medal winner and the bronze medal winner?
Investigate all the different squares you can make on this 5 by 5
grid by making your starting side go from the bottom left hand
point. Can you find out the areas of all these squares?
Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can
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?
This practical challenge invites you to investigate the different
squares you can make on a square geoboard or pegboard.
In this maze of hexagons, you start in the centre at 0. The next
hexagon must be a multiple of 2 and the next a multiple of 5. What
are the possible paths you could take?
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?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers
and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind
Vincent and Tara are making triangles with the class construction set. They have a pile of strips of different lengths. How many different triangles can they make?
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can
you investigate patios of different sizes?
The Red Express Train usually has five red carriages. How many ways
can you find to add two blue carriages?