In this section from a calendar, put a square box around the 1st,
2nd, 8th and 9th. Add all the pairs of numbers. What do you notice
about the answers?
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
Start with four numbers at the corners of a square and put the
total of two corners in the middle of that side. Keep going... Can
you estimate what the size of the last four numbers will be?
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street
in different ways.
What happens when you add the digits of a number then multiply the
result by 2 and you keep doing this? You could try for different
numbers and different rules.
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?
Susie took cherries out of a bowl by following a certain pattern.
How many cherries had there been in the bowl to start with if she
was left with 14 single ones?
Find the next number in this pattern: 3, 7, 19, 55 ...
Can you each work out the number on your card? What do you notice?
How could you sort the cards?
Place the numbers 1 to 6 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
This activity is best done with a whole class or in a large group. Can you match the cards? What happens when you add pairs of the numbers together?
Explore Alex's number plumber. What questions would you like to ask? What do you think is happening to the numbers?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what
numbers will come out?
These two group activities use mathematical reasoning - one is
numerical, one geometric.
Well now, what would happen if we lost all the nines in our number
system? Have a go at writing the numbers out in this way and have a
look at the multiplications table.
Here you see the front and back views of a dodecahedron. Each
vertex has been numbered so that the numbers around each pentagonal
face add up to 65. Can you find all the missing numbers?
Ahmed is making rods using different numbers of cubes. Which rod is twice the length of his first rod?
Find your way through the grid starting at 2 and following these
operations. What number do you end on?
At the beginning of May Tom put his tomato plant outside. On the
same day he sowed a bean in another pot. When will the two be the
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?
These sixteen children are standing in four lines of four, one
behind the other. They are each holding a card with a number on it.
Can you work out the missing numbers?
48 is called an abundant number because it is less than the sum of
its factors (without itself). Can you find some more abundant
Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use
numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house
These caterpillars have 16 parts. What different shapes do they make if each part lies in the small squares of a 4 by 4 square?
EWWNP means Exploring Wild and Wonderful Number Patterns Created by Yourself! Investigate what happens if we create number patterns using some simple rules.
Investigate this balance which is marked in halves. If you had a weight on the left-hand 7, where could you hang two weights on the right to make it balance?
In a Magic Square all the rows, columns and diagonals add to the 'Magic Constant'. How would you change the magic constant of this square?
There are to be 6 homes built on a new development site. They could
be semi-detached, detached or terraced houses. How many different
combinations of these can you find?
Suppose there is a train with 24 carriages which are going to be
put together to make up some new trains. Can you find all the ways
that this can be done?
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
Leah and Tom each have a number line. Can you work out where their counters will land? What are the secret jumps they make with their counters?
I was looking at the number plate of a car parked outside. Using my special code S208VBJ adds to 65. Can you crack my code and use it to find out what both of these number plates add up to?
This challenge combines addition, multiplication, perseverance and even proof.
There are three baskets, a brown one, a red one and a pink one, holding a total of 10 eggs. Can you use the information given to find out how many eggs are in each basket?
Here are the prices for 1st and 2nd class mail within the UK. You have an unlimited number of each of these stamps. Which stamps would you need to post a parcel weighing 825g?
I throw three dice and get 5, 3 and 2. Add the scores on the three
dice. What do you get? Now multiply the scores. What do you notice?
This task combines spatial awareness with addition and multiplication.
Strike it Out game for an adult and child. Can you stop your partner from being able to go?
This is an adding game for two players.
Can you draw a continuous line through 16 numbers on this grid so
that the total of the numbers you pass through is as high as
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
As you come down the ladders of the Tall Tower you collect useful spells. Which way should you go to collect the most spells?
Choose four of the numbers from 1 to 9 to put in the squares so that the differences between joined squares are odd.
Dotty Six game for an adult and child. Will you be the first to have three sixes in a straight line?
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?
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
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.
Ben’s class were making cutting up number tracks. First they
cut them into twos and added up the numbers on each piece. What
patterns could they see?
Move from the START to the FINISH by moving across or down to the
next square. Can you find a route to make these totals?
Mrs Morgan, the class's teacher, pinned numbers onto the backs of
three children. Use the information to find out what the three