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.
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.
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
Explore the different snakes that can be made using 5 cubes.
The Red Express Train usually has five red carriages. How many ways
can you find to add two blue carriages?
Penta people, the Pentominoes, always build their houses from five
square rooms. I wonder how many different Penta homes you can
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?
When intergalactic Wag Worms are born they look just like a cube.
Each year they grow another cube in any direction. Find all the
shapes that five-year-old Wag Worms can be.
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
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?
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
How many shapes can you build from three red and two green cubes? Can you use what you've found out to predict the number for four red and two green?
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?
Suppose there is a train with 24 carriages which are going to be
put together to make up some new trains. Can you find all the ways
that this can be done?
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?
In this investigation, you must try to make houses using cubes. If
the base must not spill over 4 squares and you have 7 cubes which
stand for 7 rooms, what different designs can you come up with?
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?
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?
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.
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.
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and reasoning to agree a final product.
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive
numbers are joined by a line.
Take 5 cubes of one colour and 2 of another colour. How many
different ways can you join them if the 5 must touch the table and
the 2 must not touch the table?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so
that you have double the number.
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?
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!
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the
clues to work out which name goes with each face.
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
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.
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 fill in this table square? The numbers 2 -12 were used to
generate it with just one number used twice.
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?
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?
In this challenge, buckets come in five different sizes. If you choose some buckets, can you investigate the different ways in which they can be filled?
Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none
can capture any of the others.
Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can
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.
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
These eleven shapes each stand for a different number. Can you use
the multiplication sums to work out what they are?
Here are four cubes joined together. How many other arrangements of
four cubes can you find? Can you draw them on dotty paper?
My cube has inky marks on each face. Can you find the route it has
taken? What does each face look like?
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?
Using all ten cards from 0 to 9, rearrange them to make five prime
numbers. Can you find any other ways of doing it?
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.
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which
route has the smallest product? Which the largest?
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.
Moira is late for school. What is the shortest route she can take from the school gates to the entrance?
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