Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems
give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical
concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
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?
A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.
Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.
Can you recreate these designs? What are the basic units? What
movement is required between each unit? Some elegant use of
procedures will help - variables not essential.
Four small numbers give the clue to the contents of the four
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.
Imagine a stack of numbered cards with one on top. Discard the top,
put the next card to the bottom and repeat continuously. Can you
predict the last card?
Bellringers have a special way to write down the patterns they
ring. Learn about these patterns and draw some of your own.
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
We're excited about this new program for drawing beautiful mathematical designs. Can you work out how we made our first few pictures and, even better, share your most elegant solutions with us?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
Can you use your powers of logic and deduction to work out the missing information in these sporty situations?
Try to solve this very difficult problem and then study our two suggested solutions. How would you use your knowledge to try to solve variants on the original problem?
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
There is a long tradition of creating mazes throughout history and across the world. This article gives details of mazes you can visit and those that you can tackle on paper.
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
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?
Find all the ways of placing the numbers 1 to 9 on a W shape, with
3 numbers on each leg, so that each set of 3 numbers has the same
in how many ways can you place the numbers 1, 2, 3 … 9 in the
nine regions of the Olympic Emblem (5 overlapping circles) so that
the amount in each ring is the same?
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.
A particular technique for solving Sudoku puzzles, known as "naked pair", is explained in this easy-to-read article.
You have twelve weights, one of which is different from the rest.
Using just 3 weighings, can you identify which weight is the odd
one out, and whether it is heavier or lighter than the rest?
This package contains a collection of problems from the NRICH
website that could be suitable for students who have a good
understanding of Factors and Multiples and who feel ready to take
on some. . . .
The puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers which
are either placed on the border lines between selected pairs of
neighbouring squares of the grid or placed after slash marks on. . . .
A man has 5 coins in his pocket. Given the clues, can you work out
what the coins are?
It is possible to identify a particular card out of a pack of 15
with the use of some mathematical reasoning. What is this reasoning
and can it be applied to other numbers of cards?
A package contains a set of resources designed to develop
students’ mathematical thinking. This package places a
particular emphasis on “being systematic” and is
designed to meet. . . .
Four friends must cross a bridge. How can they all cross it in just 17 minutes?
Rather than using the numbers 1-9, this sudoku uses the nine
different letters used to make the words "Advent Calendar".
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
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?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
A cinema has 100 seats. Show how it is possible to sell exactly 100 tickets and take exactly £100 if the prices are £10 for adults, 50p for pensioners and 10p for children.
Arrange the digits 1, 1, 2, 2, 3 and 3 so that between the two 1's
there is one digit, between the two 2's there are two digits, and
between the two 3's there are three digits.
A Latin square of order n is an array of n symbols in which each symbol occurs exactly once in each row and exactly once in each column.
Just four procedures were used to produce a design. How was it
done? Can you be systematic and elegant so that someone can follow
60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the
pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?
A Sudoku with a twist.
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for
the price of one
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
You need to find the values of the stars before you can apply normal Sudoku rules.
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
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?
An introduction to bond angle geometry.
Take three whole numbers. The differences between them give you
three new numbers. Find the differences between the new numbers and
keep repeating this. What happens?
Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent
pair adds up to a square number?
A pair of Sudokus with lots in common. In fact they are the same problem but rearranged. Can you find how they relate to solve them both?
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?