Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent
pair adds up to a square number?
You have been given nine weights, one of which is slightly heavier
than the rest. Can you work out which weight is heavier in just two
weighings of the balance?
The number of plants in Mr McGregor's magic potting shed increases
overnight. He'd like to put the same number of plants in each of
his gardens, planting one garden each day. How can he do it?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers
and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
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.
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.
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?
An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.
Countries from across the world competed in a sports tournament. Can you devise an efficient strategy to work out the order in which they finished?
Bellringers have a special way to write down the patterns they
ring. Learn about these patterns and draw some of your own.
Many numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers. For example, 15=7+8 and 10=1+2+3+4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed in this way?
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?
Given the nets of 4 cubes with the faces coloured in 4 colours, build a tower so that on each vertical wall no colour is repeated, that is all 4 colours appear.
An irregular tetrahedron is composed of four different triangles.
Can such a tetrahedron be constructed where the side lengths are 4,
5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 units of length?
Use the interactivity to listen to the bells ringing a pattern. Now
it's your turn! Play one of the bells yourself. How do you know
when it is your turn to ring?
Four friends must cross a bridge. How can they all cross it in just 17 minutes?
A 2 by 3 rectangle contains 8 squares and a 3 by 4 rectangle
contains 20 squares. What size rectangle(s) contain(s) exactly 100
squares? Can you find them all?
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
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?
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.
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?
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.
Use the interactivity to play two of the bells in a pattern. How do
you know when it is your turn to ring, and how do you know which
bell to ring?
The letters in the following addition sum represent the digits 1
... 9. If A=3 and D=2, what number is represented by "CAYLEY"?
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.
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
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?
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
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?
Given the products of diagonally opposite cells - can you complete this Sudoku?
A Sudoku that uses transformations as supporting clues.
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.
A few extra challenges set by some young NRICH members.
Starting with four different triangles, imagine you have an
unlimited number of each type. How many different tetrahedra can
you make? Convince us you have found them all.
My two digit number is special because adding the sum of its digits to the product of its digits gives me my original number. What could my number be?
Choose four different digits from 1-9 and put one in each box so that the resulting four two-digit numbers add to a total of 100.
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive
numbers are joined by a line.
This second Sudoku article discusses "Corresponding Sudokus" which are pairs of Sudokus with terms that can be matched using a substitution rule.
The letters of the word ABACUS have been arranged in the shape of a
triangle. How many different ways can you find to read the word
ABACUS from this triangular pattern?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios or fractions.
Given the products of adjacent cells, can you complete this Sudoku?
If you take a three by three square on a 1-10 addition square and
multiply the diagonally opposite numbers together, what is the
difference between these products. Why?
Charlie and Abi put a counter on 42. They wondered if they could visit all the other numbers on their 1-100 board, moving the counter using just these two operations: x2 and -5. What do you think?
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
An extra constraint means this Sudoku requires you to think in
diagonals as well as horizontal and vertical lines and boxes of
How many different symmetrical shapes can you make by shading triangles or squares?