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.
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.
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
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?
A Sudoku with a twist.
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.
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?
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.
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
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?
Find the positive integer solutions of the equation (1+1/a)(1+1/b)(1+1/c) = 2
Solve the equations to identify the clue numbers in this Sudoku problem.
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?
Given a set of points (x,y) with distinct x values, find a polynomial that goes through all of them, then prove some results about the existence and uniqueness of these polynomials.
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
Four small numbers give the clue to the contents of the four
Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.
Use the clues about the shaded areas to help solve this sudoku
This Sudoku puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers on the border lines between pairs of neighbouring squares of the grid.
Each clue number in this sudoku is the product of the two numbers in adjacent cells.
You are given the Lowest Common Multiples of sets of digits. Find
the digits and then solve the Sudoku.
This Sudoku combines all four arithmetic operations.
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
In this Sudoku, there are three coloured "islands" in the 9x9 grid. Within each "island" EVERY group of nine cells that form a 3x3 square must contain the numbers 1 through 9.
Each of the main diagonals of this sudoku must contain the numbers
1 to 9 and each rectangle width the numbers 1 to 4.
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. . . .
This Sudoku problem consists of a pair of linked standard Suduko puzzles each with some starting digits
The challenge is to find the values of the variables if you are to
solve this Sudoku.
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.
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
Show there are exactly 12 magic labellings of the Magic W using the
numbers 1 to 9. Prove that for every labelling with a magic total T
there is a corresponding labelling with a magic total 30-T.
A Sudoku based on clues that give the differences between adjacent cells.
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?
Label this plum tree graph to make it totally magic!
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?
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for
the price of one
A particular technique for solving Sudoku puzzles, known as "naked pair", is explained in this easy-to-read article.
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
This second Sudoku article discusses "Corresponding Sudokus" which are pairs of Sudokus with terms that can be matched using a substitution rule.
Special clue numbers related to the difference between numbers in
two adjacent cells and values of the stars in the "constellation"
make this a doubly interesting problem.
A Sudoku with clues as ratios or fractions.