How would you count the number of fingers in these pictures?
Which is quicker, counting up to 30 in ones or counting up to 300 in tens? Why?
Watch our videos of multiplication methods that you may not have met before. Can you make sense of them?
Number problems at primary level that require careful consideration.
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?
Can you design a new shape for the twenty-eight squares and arrange
the numbers in a logical way? What patterns do you notice?
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.
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.
This number has 903 digits. What is the sum of all 903 digits?
Number problems at primary level that may require determination.
Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?
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?
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.
Visitors to Earth from the distant planet of Zub-Zorna were amazed
when they found out that when the digits in this multiplication
were reversed, the answer was the same! Find a way to explain. . . .
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?
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
Find the next number in this pattern: 3, 7, 19, 55 ...
Can you score 100 by throwing rings on this board? Is there more
than way to do it?
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.
The value of the circle changes in each of the following problems. Can you discover its value in each problem?
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many
sheep there are in each field.
This big box multiplies anything that goes inside it by the same number. If you know the numbers that come out, what multiplication might be going on in the box?
Can you see how these factor-multiple chains work? Find the chain which contains the smallest possible numbers. How about the largest possible numbers?
Put operations signs between the numbers 3 4 5 6 to make the highest possible number and lowest possible number.
Here is a picnic that Petros and Michael are going to share equally. Can you tell us what each of them will have?
There are four equal weights on one side of the scale and an apple
on the other side. What can you say that is true about the apple
and the weights from the picture?
This article for teachers looks at how teachers can use problems from the NRICH site to help them teach division.
This multiplication uses each of the digits 0 - 9 once and once only. Using the information given, can you replace the stars in the calculation with figures?
What is the lowest number which always leaves a remainder of 1 when
divided by each of the numbers from 2 to 10?
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?
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?
What is happening at each box in these machines?
This article for teachers describes how modelling number properties
involving multiplication using an array of objects not only allows
children to represent their thinking with concrete materials,. . . .
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?
Use the information to work out how many gifts there are in each
All the girls would like a puzzle each for Christmas and all the
boys would like a book each. Solve the riddle to find out how many
puzzles and books Santa left.
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on
both sides have the same total?
Chandrika was practising a long distance run. Can you work out how
long the race was from the information?
Grandma found her pie balanced on the scale with two weights and a
quarter of a pie. So how heavy was each pie?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what
numbers will come out?
Use this information to work out whether the front or back wheel of
this bicycle gets more wear and tear.
Work out Tom's number from the answers he gives his friend. He will
only answer 'yes' or 'no'.
56 406 is the product of two consecutive numbers. What are these
The triangles in these sets are similar - can you work out the
lengths of the sides which have question marks?
Amazing as it may seem the three fives remaining in the following
`skeleton' are sufficient to reconstruct the entire long division
The clockmaker's wife cut up his birthday cake to look like a clock
face. Can you work out who received each piece?
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?
In November, Liz was interviewed for an article on a parents' website about learning times tables. Read the article here.
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?
What is the sum of all the three digit whole numbers?