If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?
These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so if you work in a systematic way, you won't leave any out.
A merchant brings four bars of gold to a jeweller. How can the jeweller use the scales just twice to identify the lighter, fake bar?
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the month from the 1st to the 31st.
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 blocks.
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?
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
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?
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.
The Zargoes use almost the same alphabet as English. What does this birthday message say?
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?
What is the smallest number of jumps needed before the white rabbits and the grey rabbits can continue along their path?
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?
Sitting around a table are three girls and three boys. Use the clues to work out were each person is sitting.
Use the clues to work out which cities Mohamed, Sheng, Tanya and Bharat live in.
Six friends sat around a circular table. Can you work out from the information who sat where and what their profession were?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
If these elves wear a different outfit every day for as many days as possible, how many days can their fun last?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so working in a systematic way will ensure none are left out.
Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
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?
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 make?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.
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!
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which route has the smallest product? Which the largest?
The planet of Vuvv has seven moons. Can you work out how long it is between each super-eclipse?
Can you rearrange the biscuits on the plates so that the three biscuits on each plate are all different and there is no plate with two biscuits the same as two biscuits on another plate?
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?
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 jugs.
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive numbers are joined by a line.
Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none can capture any of the others.
What is the smallest number of coins needed to make up 12 dollars and 83 cents?
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.
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?
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!
How many trapeziums, of various sizes, are hidden in this picture?
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
Put 10 counters in a row. Find a way to arrange the counters into five pairs, evenly spaced in a row, in just 5 moves, using the rules.
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?
On a digital 24 hour clock, at certain times, all the digits are consecutive. How many times like this are there between midnight and 7 a.m.?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Place eight dots on this diagram, so that there are only two dots on each straight line and only two dots on each circle.
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?
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?