Using the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 once and only once, and the
operations x and ÷ once and only once, what is the smallest
whole number you can make?
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.
Use the information to work out how many gifts there are in each
Peter, Melanie, Amil and Jack received a total of 38 chocolate
eggs. Use the information to work out how many eggs each person
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.
The clockmaker's wife cut up his birthday cake to look like a clock
face. Can you work out who received each piece?
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.
The value of the circle changes in each of the following problems. Can you discover its value in each problem?
Can you replace the letters with numbers? Is there only one
solution in each case?
These eleven shapes each stand for a different number. Can you use the multiplication sums to work out what they are?
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?
Put operations signs between the numbers 3 4 5 6 to make the highest possible number and lowest possible number.
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!
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?
Can you see how these factor-multiple chains work? Find the chain which contains the smallest possible numbers. How about the largest possible numbers?
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?
What is the lowest number which always leaves a remainder of 1 when
divided by each of the numbers from 2 to 10?
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?
Work out Tom's number from the answers he gives his friend. He will
only answer 'yes' or 'no'.
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?
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?
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which
route has the smallest product? Which the largest?
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.
Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on
both sides have the same total?
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?
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the
Mr McGregor has a magic potting shed. Overnight, the number of
plants in it doubles. He'd like to put the same number of plants in
each of three gardens, planting one garden each day. Can he do it?
Grandma found her pie balanced on the scale with two weights and a
quarter of a pie. So how heavy was each pie?
Chandrika was practising a long distance run. Can you work out how
long the race was from the information?
What is happening at each box in these machines?
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
Which is quicker, counting up to 30 in ones or counting up to 300 in tens? Why?
After training hard, these two children have improved their
results. Can you work out the length or height of their first
Can you find which shapes you need to put into the grid to make the
totals at the end of each row and the bottom of each column?
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.
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
This group activity will encourage you to share calculation
strategies and to think about which strategy might be the most
Look at what happens when you take a number, square it and subtract your answer. What kind of number do you get? Can you prove it?
This problem is designed to help children to learn, and to use, the two and three times tables.
Four Go game for an adult and child. Will you be the first to have four numbers in a row on the number line?
This task combines spatial awareness with addition and multiplication.
Can you work out what a ziffle is on the planet Zargon?
Resources to support understanding of multiplication and division through playing with number.
In November, Liz was interviewed for an article on a parents' website about learning times tables. Read the article here.
Find the next number in this pattern: 3, 7, 19, 55 ...
What do you notice about the date 03.06.09? Or 08.01.09? This
challenge invites you to investigate some interesting dates
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?
If the numbers 5, 7 and 4 go into this function machine, what
numbers will come out?