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Games. Visualising. Interactivities. Problem solving. Roadshow. Rich Tasks. Working systematically. Pedagogy. Learning mathematics. Generalising.

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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Working systematically

Twinkle Twinkle

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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.

I've Submitted a Solution - What Next?

Stage: 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

In this article, the NRICH team describe the process of selecting solutions for publication on the site.

First Connect Three for Two

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

First Connect Three game for an adult and child. Use the dice numbers and either addition or subtraction to get three numbers in a straight line.

Teddy Town

Stage: 1, 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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?

First Connect Three

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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?

The School Trip

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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 away?

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.

Jumping Cricket

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

3 Blocks Towers

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Take three differently coloured blocks - maybe red, yellow and blue. Make a tower using one of each colour. How many different towers can you make?

Maths Trails

Stage: 2 and 3

The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind maths trails.

Inky Cube

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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?

Mixed-up Socks

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Button-up

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all the buttons?

Factor Lines

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules, to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.

Family Tree

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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.

Briefcase Lock

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Whose Face?

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.

Growing Garlic

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Ben and his mum are planting garlic. Use the interactivity to help you find out how many cloves of garlic they might have had.

Fault-free Rectangles

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of your own.

Red Express Train

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

The Red Express Train usually has five red carriages. How many ways can you find to add two blue carriages?

Matching Time

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Try this matching game which will help you recognise different ways of saying the same time interval.

Tea Cups

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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.

Colour in the Square

Stage: 2, 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Can you put the 25 coloured tiles into the 5 x 5 square so that no column, no row and no diagonal line have tiles of the same colour in them?

Creating Cubes

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

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.

Jigsaw Pieces

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Games Related to Nim

Stage: 1, 2, 3 and 4

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.

Encouraging Primary Children to Work Systematically

Stage: Early years, 1 and 2

This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which to help children become better at working systematically.

Multiples Grid

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

Here to There 1 2 3

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Counters

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Hover your mouse over the counters to see which ones will be removed. Click to remover them. The winner is the last one to remove a counter. How you can make sure you win?

Zargon Glasses

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Zumf makes spectacles for the residents of the planet Zargon, who have either 3 eyes or 4 eyes. How many lenses will Zumf need to make all the different orders for 9 families?

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you put plus signs in so this is true? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = 99 How many ways can you do it?

Triangle Edges

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

How many triangles can you make using sticks that are 3cm, 4cm and 5cm long?

Code Breaker

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

Arrangements

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Is it possible to place 2 counters on the 3 by 3 grid so that there is an even number of counters in every row and every column? How about if you have 3 counters or 4 counters or....?

Cuisenaire Counting

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Here are some rods that are different colours. How could I make a dark green rod using yellow and white rods?

Lots of Lollies

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

One to Fifteen

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?

Robot Monsters

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Use these head, body and leg pieces to make Robot Monsters which are different heights.

The Pied Piper of Hamelin

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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!

Polo Square

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.

Pouring the Punch Drink

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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 jugs.

A City of Towers

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Tessellate the Triominoes

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

What happens when you try and fit the triomino pieces into these two grids?

Cover the Camel

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Can you cover the camel with these pieces?

Nineteen Hexagons

Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

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?

Bean Bags for Bernard's Bag

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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?

Rabbits in the Pen

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of rabbit there are in these pens?

A-magical Number Maze

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

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!

1 to 8

Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive numbers are joined by a line.