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?
In this section from a calendar, put a square box around the 1st,
2nd, 8th and 9th. Add all the pairs of numbers. What do you notice
about the answers?
Start with four numbers at the corners of a square and put the
total of two corners in the middle of that side. Keep going... Can
you estimate what the size of the last four numbers will be?
Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is
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
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?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of
rabbit there are in these pens?
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?
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
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?
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?
Find the next number in this pattern: 3, 7, 19, 55 ...
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 put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
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
Put the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 into the squares so that the
numbers on each circle add up to the same amount. Can you find the
rule for giving another set of six numbers?
Susie took cherries out of a bowl by following a certain pattern.
How many cherries had there been in the bowl to start with if she
was left with 14 single ones?
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?
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street
in different ways.
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
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 put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four
calculations are correct?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what
numbers will come out?
You have two egg timers. One takes 4 minutes exactly to empty and
the other takes 7 minutes. What times in whole minutes can you
measure and how?
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!
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?
48 is called an abundant number because it is less than the sum of its factors (without itself). Can you find some more abundant numbers?
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?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
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
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?
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?
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
This task follows on from Build it Up and takes the ideas into three dimensions!
Investigate this balance which is marked in halves. If you had a weight on the left-hand 7, where could you hang two weights on the right to make it balance?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.
Delight your friends with this cunning trick! Can you explain how
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number of points each of their routes scores.
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.
Explore Alex's number plumber. What questions would you like to ask? What do you think is happening to the numbers?
These two group activities use mathematical reasoning - one is
numerical, one geometric.
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the
triangle adds to the same total.
Cassandra, David and Lachlan are brothers and sisters. They range
in age between 1 year and 14 years. Can you figure out their exact
ages from the clues?
Tell your friends that you have a strange calculator that turns
numbers backwards. What secret number do you have to enter to make
141 414 turn around?