If you wrote all the possible four digit numbers made by using each
of the digits 2, 4, 5, 7 once, what would they add up to?
There are exactly 3 ways to add 4 odd numbers to get 10. Find all
the ways of adding 8 odd numbers to get 20. To be sure of getting
all the solutions you will need to be systematic. What about. . . .
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?
Whenever two chameleons of different colours meet they change
colour to the third colour. Describe the shortest sequence of
meetings in which all the chameleons change to green if you start
with 12. . . .
Investigate $1^n + 19^n + 20^n + 51^n + 57^n + 80^n + 82^n $ and $2^n + 12^n + 31^n + 40^n + 69^n + 71^n + 85^n$ for different values of n.
A combination mechanism for a safe comprises thirty-two tumblers
numbered from one to thirty-two in such a way that the numbers in
each wheel total 132... Could you open the safe?
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?
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?
Five numbers added together in pairs produce: 0, 2, 4, 4, 6, 8, 9, 11, 13, 15 What are the five numbers?
Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is
The picture shows a lighthouse and many underwater creatures. If
you know the markings on the lighthouse are 1m apart, can you work
out the distances between some of the different creatures?
The letters in the following addition sum represent the digits 1
... 9. If A=3 and D=2, what number is represented by "CAYLEY"?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
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?
Can you arrange the digits 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 into three 3-digit
numbers such that their total is close to 1500?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
Can you use the information to find out which cards I have used?
Using some or all of the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division and using the digits 3, 3, 8 and 8 each once and only once make an expression equal to 24.
Number problems at primary level to work on with others.
Who said that adding couldn't be fun?
First Connect Three game for an adult and child. Use the dice numbers and either addition or subtraction to get three numbers in a straight line.
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
Roll two red dice and a green dice. Add the two numbers on the red dice and take away the number on the green. What are all the different possibilities that could come up?
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
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?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street
in different ways.
This task combines spatial awareness with addition and multiplication.
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?
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?
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on
both sides have the same total?
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!
Mrs Morgan, the class's teacher, pinned numbers onto the backs of
three children. Use the information to find out what the three
How is it possible to predict the card?
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.
These two group activities use mathematical reasoning - one is
numerical, one geometric.
A game for 2 people using a pack of cards Turn over 2 cards and try
to make an odd number or a multiple of 3.
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
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?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
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
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
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 is an adding game for two players.
A lady has a steel rod and a wooden pole and she knows the length
of each. How can she measure out an 8 unit piece of pole?
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?
Three dice are placed in a row. Find a way to turn each one so that the three numbers on top of the dice total the same as the three numbers on the front of the dice. Can you find all the ways to do. . . .
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?