How can we help students make sense of addition and subtraction of negative numbers?

Can you each work out the number on your card? What do you notice? How could you sort the cards?

Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house numbers.

Exactly 195 digits have been used to number the pages in a book. How many pages does the book have?

Choose four different digits from 1-9 and put one in each box so that the resulting four two-digit numbers add to a total of 100.

Using 3 rods of integer lengths, none longer than 10 units and not using any rod more than once, you can measure all the lengths in whole units from 1 to 10 units. How many ways can you do this?

For this challenge, you'll need to play Got It! Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?

There are over sixty different ways of making 24 by adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing all four numbers 4, 6, 6 and 8 (using each number only once). How many can you find?

How would you count the number of fingers in these pictures?

Fill in the numbers to make the sum of each row, column and diagonal equal to 34. For an extra challenge try the huge American Flag magic square.

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?

Fill in the missing numbers so that adding each pair of corner numbers gives you the number between them (in the box).

Skippy and Anna are locked in a room in a large castle. The key to that room, and all the other rooms, is a number. The numbers are locked away in a problem. Can you help them to get out?

The clockmaker's wife cut up his birthday cake to look like a clock face. Can you work out who received each piece?

Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.

If you have ten counters numbered 1 to 10, how many can you put into pairs that add to 10? Which ones do you have to leave out? Why?

Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the triangle adds to the same total.

Find out what a Deca Tree is and then work out how many leaves there will be after the woodcutter has cut off a trunk, a branch, a twig and a leaf.

In this game, you can add, subtract, multiply or divide the numbers on the dice. Which will you do so that you get to the end of the number line first?

In how many ways could Mrs Beeswax put ten coins into her three puddings so that each pudding ended up with at least two coins?

Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?

This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.

The Scot, John Napier, invented these strips about 400 years ago to help calculate multiplication and division. Can you work out how to use Napier's bones to find the answer to these multiplications?

There are nasty versions of this dice game but we'll start with the nice ones...

Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many sheep there are in each field.

Find a great variety of ways of asking questions which make 8.

If each of these three shapes has a value, can you find the totals of the combinations? Perhaps you can use the shapes to make the given totals?

Can you design a new shape for the twenty-eight squares and arrange the numbers in a logical way? What patterns do you notice?

A game for two people, or play online. Given a target number, say 23, and a range of numbers to choose from, say 1-4, players take it in turns to add to the running total to hit their target.

What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?

The value of the circle changes in each of the following problems. Can you discover its value in each problem?

An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.

Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of rabbit there are in these pens?

Can you score 100 by throwing rings on this board? Is there more than way to do it?

Can you work out how many flowers there will be on the Amazing Splitting Plant after it has been growing for six weeks?

Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can you make?

There were 22 legs creeping across the web. How many flies? How many spiders?

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?

Woof is a big dog. Yap is a little dog. Emma has 16 dog biscuits to give to the two dogs. She gave Woof 4 more biscuits than Yap. How many biscuits did each dog get?

Here is a chance to play a version of the classic Countdown Game.

Katie had a pack of 20 cards numbered from 1 to 20. She arranged the cards into 6 unequal piles where each pile added to the same total. What was the total and how could this be done?

A group of children are using measuring cylinders but they lose the labels. Can you help relabel them?

Explore Alex's number plumber. What questions would you like to ask? Don't forget to keep visiting NRICH projects site for the latest developments and questions.

How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can you find all the ways of doing this?

An environment which simulates working with Cuisenaire rods.

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.