What do you notice about the date 03.06.09? Or 08.01.09? This
challenge invites you to investigate some interesting dates
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?
Can you each work out the number on your card? What do you notice?
How could you sort the cards?
Can you find which shapes you need to put into the grid to make the
totals at the end of each row and the bottom of each column?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
Here is a chance to play a version of the classic Countdown Game.
If you have only four weights, where could you place them in order
to balance this equaliser?
Ten cards are put into five envelopes so that there are two cards in each envelope. The sum of the numbers inside it is written on each envelope. What numbers could be inside the envelopes?
Exactly 195 digits have been used to number the pages in a book.
How many pages does the book have?
Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use
numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house
There are 78 prisoners in a square cell block of twelve cells. The
clever prison warder arranged them so there were 25 along each wall
of the prison block. How did he do it?
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other
numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
An environment which simulates working with Cuisenaire rods.
This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
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?
Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is
Number problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
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?
Try adding together the dates of all the days in one week. Now
multiply the first date by 7 and add 21. Can you explain what
Can you put plus signs in so this is true? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = 99
How many ways can you do it?
Mr. Sunshine tells the children they will have 2 hours of homework.
After several calculations, Harry says he hasn't got time to do
this homework. Can you see where his reasoning is wrong?
Tim had nine cards each with a different number from 1 to 9 on it. How could he have put them into three piles so that the total in each pile was 15?
This magic square has operations written in it, to make it into a
maze. Start wherever you like, go through every cell and go out a
total of 15!
This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.
A group of children are using measuring cylinders but they lose the labels. Can you help relabel them?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
There were chews for 2p, mini eggs for 3p, Chocko bars for 5p and
lollypops for 7p in the sweet shop. What could each of the children
buy with their money?
There are 44 people coming to a dinner party. There are 15 square
tables that seat 4 people. Find a way to seat the 44 people using
all 15 tables, with no empty places.
Can you make square numbers by adding two prime numbers together?
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
Add the sum of the squares of four numbers between 10 and 20 to the
sum of the squares of three numbers less than 6 to make the square
of another, larger, number.
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
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
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Find the sum and difference between a pair of two-digit numbers. Now find the sum and difference between the sum and difference! What happens?
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?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the
Starting with the number 180, take away 9 again and again, joining up the dots as you go. Watch out - don't join all the dots!
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
This dice train has been made using specific rules. How many different trains can you make?
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?
If you had any number of ordinary dice, what are the possible ways
of making their totals 6? What would the product of the dice be
This task follows on from Build it Up and takes the ideas into three dimensions!
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
We can arrange dots in a similar way to the 5 on a dice and they
usually sit quite well into a rectangular shape. How many
altogether in this 3 by 5? What happens for other sizes?
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?
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?