How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one
layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same
colour are next to each other in any direction?
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
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 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 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?
Can you complete this calculation by filling in the missing numbers? In how many different ways can you do it?
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using 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?
Can you work out some different ways to balance this equation?
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?
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number
of points each of their routes scores.
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
Using all ten cards from 0 to 9, rearrange them to make five prime
numbers. Can you find any other ways of doing it?
The planet of Vuvv has seven moons. Can you work out how long it is
between each super-eclipse?
Can you order the digits from 1-3 to make a number which is divisible by 3 so when the last digit is removed it becomes a 2-figure number divisible by 2, and so on?
Can you make square numbers by adding two prime numbers together?
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.
Can you work out the arrangement of the digits in the square so
that the given products are correct? The numbers 1 - 9 may be used
once and once only.
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat?
How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
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!
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules,
to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
Can you fill in this table square? The numbers 2 -12 were used to generate it with just one number used twice.
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?
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
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?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Have a go at balancing this equation. Can you find different ways of doing it?
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?
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the
month from the 1st to the 31st.
This task depends on groups working collaboratively, discussing and reasoning to agree a final product.
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?
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?
In a square in which the houses are evenly spaced, numbers 3 and 10
are opposite each other. What is the smallest and what is the
largest possible number of houses in the square?
Tim had nine cards each with a different number from 1 to 9 on it.
How could he have put them into three piles so that the total in
each pile was 15?
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?
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.
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?
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which
route has the smallest product? Which the largest?
Sally and Ben were drawing shapes in chalk on the school
playground. Can you work out what shapes each of them drew using
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?
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How
will you know you've found them all?
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.
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
My cube has inky marks on each face. Can you find the route it has
taken? What does each face look like?
Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins
to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?