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?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
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?
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.
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.
You need to find the values of the stars before you can apply normal Sudoku rules.
This is a variation of sudoku which contains a set of special clue-numbers. Each set of 4 small digits stands for the numbers in the four cells of the grid adjacent to this set.
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?
The challenge is to find the values of the variables if you are to
solve this Sudoku.
Solve the equations to identify the clue numbers in this Sudoku problem.
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?
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
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?
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
You are given the Lowest Common Multiples of sets of digits. Find
the digits and then solve the Sudoku.
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
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?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers
and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind
Bellringers have a special way to write down the patterns they
ring. Learn about these patterns and draw some of your own.
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
A Sudoku with a twist.
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.
Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent
pair adds up to a square number?
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.
Label this plum tree graph to make it totally magic!
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?
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?
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?
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?
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.
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules, to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
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?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
Four small numbers give the clue to the contents of the four
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.
Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.
Explore this how this program produces the sequences it does. What
are you controlling when you change the values of the variables?
A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.
Just four procedures were used to produce a design. How was it
done? Can you be systematic and elegant so that someone can follow
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the
pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?
Play the divisibility game to create numbers in which the first two digits make a number divisible by 2, the first three digits make a number divisible by 3...
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
Use the clues about the shaded areas to help solve this sudoku
Each of the main diagonals of this sudoku must contain the numbers
1 to 9 and each rectangle width the numbers 1 to 4.
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
How many different symmetrical shapes can you make by shading triangles or squares?
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?