An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
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?
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How
will you know you've found them all?
Can you help the children find the two triangles which have the
lengths of two sides numerically equal to their areas?
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
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?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
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!
When newspaper pages get separated at home we have to try to sort
them out and get things in the correct order. How many ways can we
arrange these pages so that the numbering may be different?
These rectangles have been torn. How many squares did each one have
inside it before it was ripped?
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 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!
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.
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
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, focuses on 'open squares'. What would the next five open squares look like?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, invites you to explore the different combinations of scores that you might get on these dart boards.
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?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
What is the largest 'ribbon square' you can make? And the smallest? How many different squares can you make altogether?
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?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number of points each of their routes scores.
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?
This challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.
Can you put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
There are 78 prisoners in a square cell block of twelve cells. The
clever prison warder arranged them so there were 25 along each wall
of the prison block. How did he do it?
What can you say about these shapes? This problem challenges you to create shapes with different areas and perimeters.
The challenge here is to find as many routes as you can for a fence
to go so that this town is divided up into two halves, each with 8
There are 44 people coming to a dinner party. There are 15 square
tables that seat 4 people. Find a way to seat the 44 people using
all 15 tables, with no empty places.
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the
What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can
you investigate patios of different sizes?
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square
tiles of different sizes?
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
Ana and Ross looked in a trunk in the attic. They found old cloaks
and gowns, hats and masks. How many possible costumes could they
If you have three circular objects, you could arrange them so that
they are separate, touching, overlapping or inside each other. Can
you investigate all the different possibilities?
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
Winifred Wytsh bought a box each of jelly babies, milk jelly bears,
yellow jelly bees and jelly belly beans. In how many different ways
could she make a jolly jelly feast with 32 legs?
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.
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?
What do you notice about the date 03.06.09? Or 08.01.09? This
challenge invites you to investigate some interesting dates
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.
In a bowl there are 4 Chocolates, 3 Jellies and 5 Mints. Find a way
to share the sweets between the three children so they each get the
kind they like. Is there more than one way to do it?
I like to walk along the cracks of the paving stones, but not the
outside edge of the path itself. How many different routes can you
find for me to take?
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?
Investigate all the different squares you can make on this 5 by 5 grid by making your starting side go from the bottom left hand point. Can you find out the areas of all these squares?
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?
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?
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?
If you had any number of ordinary dice, what are the possible ways
of making their totals 6? What would the product of the dice be