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.
We're excited about this new program for drawing beautiful mathematical designs. Can you work out how we made our first few pictures and, even better, share your most elegant solutions with us?
Can you see who the gold medal winner is? What about the silver medal winner and the bronze medal winner?
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.
A particular technique for solving Sudoku puzzles, known as "naked pair", is explained in this easy-to-read article.
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?
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?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers
and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
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.
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.
Use the information to describe these marbles. What colours must be
on marbles that sparkle when rolling but are dark inside?
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
If these elves wear a different outfit every day for as many days
as possible, how many days can their fun last?
Arrange the digits 1, 1, 2, 2, 3 and 3 so that between the two 1's
there is one digit, between the two 2's there are two digits, and
between the two 3's there are three digits.
Use the clues to work out which cities Mohamed, Sheng, Tanya and
Bharat live in.
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
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.
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
In this article, the NRICH team describe the process of selecting solutions for publication on the site.
What could the half time scores have been in these Olympic hockey matches?
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
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.
My local DIY shop calculates the price of its windows according to the area of glass and the length of frame used. Can you work out how they arrived at these prices?
Can you order pictures of the development of a frog from frogspawn
and of a bean seed growing into a plant?
Can you use the information to find out which cards I have used?
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Follow the clues to find the mystery number.
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?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
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?
60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the
pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the
month from the 1st to the 31st.
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.
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
There were chews for 2p, mini eggs for 3p, Chocko bars for 5p and
lollypops for 7p in the sweet shop. What could each of the children
buy with their money?
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?
You have two egg timers. One takes 4 minutes exactly to empty and
the other takes 7 minutes. What times in whole minutes can you
measure and how?
Can you work out how to balance this equaliser? You can put more
than one weight on a hook.
Katie had a pack of 20 cards numbered from 1 to 20. She arranged
the cards into 6 unequal piles where each pile added to the same
total. What was the total and how could this be done?
Can you put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
Here you see the front and back views of a dodecahedron. Each
vertex has been numbered so that the numbers around each pentagonal
face add up to 65. Can you find all the missing numbers?
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of
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?
How many trains can you make which are the same length as Matt's, using rods that are identical?
Use the interactivity to help get a feel for this problem and to find out all the possible ways the balls could land.
Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire
Number problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
This challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.