Explore Alex's number plumber. What questions would you like to ask? What do you think is happening to the numbers?
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
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.
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.
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?
48 is called an abundant number because it is less than the sum of
its factors (without itself). Can you find some more abundant
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!
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.
Mr. Sunshine tells the children they will have 2 hours of homework.
After several calculations, Harry says he hasn't got time to do
this homework. Can you see where his reasoning is wrong?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what
numbers will come out?
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.
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?
What is the sum of all the three digit whole numbers?
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 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.
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?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
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?
Use the information to work out how many gifts there are in each
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?
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street
in different ways.
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on
both sides have the same total?
Find another number that is one short of a square number and when
you double it and add 1, the result is also a square number.
Put operations signs between the numbers 3 4 5 6 to make the highest possible number and lowest possible number.
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.
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.
Fill in the missing numbers so that adding each pair of corner
numbers gives you the number between them (in the box).
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.
Peter, Melanie, Amil and Jack received a total of 38 chocolate
eggs. Use the information to work out how many eggs each person
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!
Three children are going to buy some plants for their birthdays. They will plant them within circular paths. How could they do this?
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?
Go through the maze, collecting and losing your money as you go.
Which route gives you the highest return? And the lowest?
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?
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?
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
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?
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?
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?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
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?
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?
Put a number at the top of the machine and collect a number at the
bottom. What do you get? Which numbers get back to themselves?
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number
of points each of their routes scores.
What is happening at each box in these machines?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different
ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the