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.
When I type a sequence of letters my calculator gives the product of all the numbers in the corresponding memories. What numbers should I store so that when I type 'ONE' it returns 1, and when I type. . . .
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 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?
This challenge is to make up YOUR OWN alphanumeric. Each letter represents a digit and where the same letter appears more than once it must represent the same digit each time.
What is the sum of all the digits in all the integers from one to one million?
This number has 903 digits. What is the sum of all 903 digits?
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. . . .
This group activity will encourage you to share calculation strategies and to think about which strategy might be the most efficient.
Find the numbers in this sum
On the table there is a pile of oranges and lemons that weighs exactly one kilogram. Using the information, can you work out how many lemons there are?
Rocco ran in a 200 m race for his class. Use the information to find out how many runners there were in the race and what Rocco's finishing position was.
Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?
The sum of the first 'n' natural numbers is a 3 digit number in which all the digits are the same. How many numbers have been summed?
Annie cut this numbered cake into 3 pieces with 3 cuts so that the numbers on each piece added to the same total. Where were the cuts and what fraction of the whole cake was each piece?
Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house numbers.
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.
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 happens?
What is the largest number you can make using the three digits 2, 3 and 4 in any way you like, using any operations you like? You can only use each digit once.
Peter, Melanie, Amil and Jack received a total of 38 chocolate eggs. Use the information to work out how many eggs each person had.
Put operations signs between the numbers 3 4 5 6 to make the highest possible number and lowest possible number.
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.
Fill in the missing numbers so that adding each pair of corner numbers gives you the number between them (in the box).
On a calculator, make 15 by using only the 2 key and any of the four operations keys. How many ways can you find to do it?
There are three buckets each of which holds a maximum of 5 litres. Use the clues to work out how much liquid there is in each bucket.
Amy has a box containing domino pieces but she does not think it is a complete set. She has 24 dominoes in her box and there are 125 spots on them altogether. Which of her domino pieces are missing?
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.
Find the next number in this pattern: 3, 7, 19, 55 ...
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
Can you design a new shape for the twenty-eight squares and arrange the numbers in a logical way? What patterns do you notice?
Number problems at primary level to work on with others.
Number problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
If you take a three by three square on a 1-10 addition square and multiply the diagonally opposite numbers together, what is the difference between these products. Why?
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
This task combines spatial awareness with addition and multiplication.
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?
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.
Number problems at primary level that may require determination.
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many sheep there are in each field.
Can you score 100 by throwing rings on this board? Is there more than way to do it?
What is happening at each box in these machines?
The value of the circle changes in each of the following problems. Can you discover its value in each problem?
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the triangle adds to the same total.
Use the information to work out how many gifts there are in each pile.
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on both sides have the same total?
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?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what numbers will come out?
This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.