Can you see why 2 by 2 could be 5? Can you predict what 2 by 10
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!
Can you make a cycle of pairs that add to make a square number
using all the numbers in the box below, once and once only?
We start with one yellow cube and build around it to make a 3x3x3 cube with red cubes. Then we build around that red cube with blue cubes and so on. How many cubes of each colour have we used?
Place the numbers from 1 to 9 in the squares below so that the difference between joined squares is odd. How many different ways can you do this?
Choose a symbol to put into the number sentence.
Start by putting one million (1 000 000) into the display of your
calculator. Can you reduce this to 7 using just the 7 key and add,
subtract, multiply, divide and equals as many times as you like?
Imagine a pyramid which is built in square layers of small cubes. If we number the cubes from the top, starting with 1, can you picture which cubes are directly below this first cube?
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.
Is it possible to rearrange the numbers 1,2......12 around a clock
face in such a way that every two numbers in adjacent positions
differ by any of 3, 4 or 5 hours?
The idea of this game is to add or subtract the two numbers on the dice and cover the result on the grid, trying to get a line of three. Are there some numbers that are good to aim for?
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
If you have only four weights, where could you place them in order
to balance this equaliser?
Here is a chance to play a version of the classic Countdown Game.
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, involves open-topped boxes made with interlocking cubes. Explore the number of units of paint that are needed to cover the boxes. . . .
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
Try entering different sets of numbers in the number pyramids. How does the total at the top change?
This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four
calculations are correct?
This challenge extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.
Can you find six numbers to go in the Daisy from which you can make all the numbers from 1 to a number bigger than 25?
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?
This challenging activity involves finding different ways to distribute fifteen items among four sets, when the sets must include three, four, five and six items.
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.
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
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?
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.
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?
Can you each work out the number on your card? What do you notice?
How could you sort the cards?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, invites you to explore the different combinations of scores that you might get on these dart boards.
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?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.
The letters in the following addition sum represent the digits 1
... 9. If A=3 and D=2, what number is represented by "CAYLEY"?
How many solutions can you find to this sum? Each of the different letters stands for a different number.
How have the numbers been placed in this Carroll diagram? Which labels would you put on each row and column?
This problem is based on a code using two different prime numbers
less than 10. You'll need to multiply them together and shift the
alphabet forwards by the result. Can you decipher the code?
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
Winifred Wytsh bought a box each of jelly babies, milk jelly bears,
yellow jelly bees and jelly belly beans. In how many different ways
could she make a jolly jelly feast with 32 legs?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
Strike it Out game for an adult and child. Can you stop your partner from being able to go?
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the
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?
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!
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.