A mathematician goes into a supermarket and buys four items. Using
a calculator she multiplies the cost instead of adding them. How
can her answer be the same as the total at the till?
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 challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.
On my calculator I divided one whole number by another whole number and got the answer 3.125 If the numbers are both under 50, what are they?
Mr McGregor has a magic potting shed. Overnight, the number of
plants in it doubles. He'd like to put the same number of plants in
each of three gardens, planting one garden each day. Can he do it?
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number
of points each of their routes scores.
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat?
How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
The discs for this game are kept in a flat square box with a square
hole for each disc. Use the information to find out how many discs
of each colour there are in the box.
Ben passed a third of his counters to Jack, Jack passed a quarter
of his counters to Emma and Emma passed a fifth of her counters to
Ben. After this they all had the same number of counters.
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
This task follows on from Build it Up and takes the ideas into three dimensions!
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
Find the sum and difference between a pair of two-digit numbers. Now find the sum and difference between the sum and difference! What happens?
Whenever a monkey has peaches, he always keeps a fraction of them each day, gives the rest away, and then eats one. How long could he make his peaches last for?
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other
numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
Tim's class collected data about all their pets. Can you put the
animal names under each column in the block graph using the
Play the divisibility game to create numbers in which the first two digits make a number divisible by 2, the first three digits make a number divisible by 3...
Alice and Brian are snails who live on a wall and can only travel
along the cracks. Alice wants to go to see Brian. How far is the
shortest route along the cracks? Is there more than one way to go?
I was in my car when I noticed a line of four cars on the lane next
to me with number plates starting and ending with J, K, L and M.
What order were they in?
This Sudoku puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers on the border lines between pairs of neighbouring squares of the grid.
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the
month from the 1st to the 31st.
Given the products of adjacent cells, can you complete this Sudoku?
There are seven pots of plants in a greenhouse. They have lost their labels. Perhaps you can help re-label them.
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.
What is the date in February 2002 where the 8 digits are
palindromic if the date is written in the British way?
How many rectangles can you find in this shape? Which ones are
differently sized and which are 'similar'?
The Vikings communicated in writing by making simple scratches on
wood or stones called runes. Can you work out how their code works
using the table of the alphabet?
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules,
to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
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?
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?
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?
There is a clock-face where the numbers have become all mixed up. Can you find out where all the numbers have got to from these ten statements?
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.
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
On a digital clock showing 24 hour time, over a whole day, how many
times does a 5 appear? Is it the same number for a 12 hour clock
over a whole day?
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
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.
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?
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!
Can you make square numbers by adding two prime numbers together?
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?
Find a cuboid (with edges of integer values) that has a surface
area of exactly 100 square units. Is there more than one? Can you
find them all?
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.
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?
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.
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?