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?
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?
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.
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. . . .
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.
Who said that adding couldn't be fun?
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.
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
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?
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 three digit whole numbers?
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).
48 is called an abundant number because it is less than the sum of
its factors (without itself). Can you find some more abundant
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. . . .
Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use
numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house
The letters in the following addition sum represent the digits 1
... 9. If A=3 and D=2, what number is represented by "CAYLEY"?
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.
Look on the back of any modern book and you will find an ISBN code. Take this code and calculate this sum in the way shown. Can you see what the answers always have in common?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
In this game, you can add, subtract, multiply or divide the numbers
on the dice. Which will you do so that you get to the end of the
number line first?
The clockmaker's wife cut up his birthday cake to look like a clock
face. Can you work out who received each piece?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
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?
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
If you have only four weights, where could you place them in order
to balance this equaliser?
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other
numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
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?
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?
Ben’s class were cutting up number tracks. First they cut them into twos and added up the numbers on each piece. What patterns could they see?
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?
A game for 2 or more players with a pack of cards. Practise your
skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to hit
the target score.
There are over sixty different ways of making 24 by adding,
subtracting, multiplying and dividing all four numbers 4, 6, 6 and
8 (using each number only once). How many can you find?
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.
On the planet Vuv there are two sorts of creatures. The Zios have 3 legs and the Zepts have 7 legs. The great planetary explorer Nico counted 52 legs. How many Zios and how many Zepts were there?
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?
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?
There is a clock-face where the numbers have become all mixed up. Can you find out where all the numbers have got to from these ten statements?
Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the
triangle adds to the same total.
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
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 is the sum of all the digits in all the integers from one to
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
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?
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make
another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same
This is an adding game for two players.
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?
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.