What happens if you join every second point on this circle? How
about every third point? Try with different steps and see if you
can predict what will happen.
Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat?
How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
Polygonal numbers are those that are arranged in shapes as they enlarge. Explore the polygonal numbers drawn here.
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
What happens when you round these three-digit numbers to the nearest 100?
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?
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number
of points each of their routes scores.
What can you say about these shapes? This problem challenges you to
create shapes with different areas and perimeters.
Can you put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
Ben’s class were making cutting up number tracks. First they
cut them into twos and added up the numbers on each piece. What
patterns could they see?
Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.
Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is
While we were sorting some papers we found 3 strange sheets which
seemed to come from small books but there were page numbers at the
foot of each page. Did the pages come from the same book?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
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?
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?
This challenge encourages you to explore dividing a three-digit number by a single-digit number.
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 two dice to generate two numbers with one decimal place. What happens when you round these numbers to the nearest whole number?
How many different journeys could you make if you were going to visit four stations in this network? How about if there were five stations? Can you predict the number of journeys for seven stations?
In how many different ways can you break up a stick of 7 interlocking cubes? Now try with a stick of 8 cubes and a stick of 6 cubes.
Can you see why 2 by 2 could be 5? Can you predict what 2 by 10
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of
Place the numbers from 1 to 9 in the squares below so that the difference between joined squares is odd. How many different ways can you do this?
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
Use your addition and subtraction skills, combined with some strategic thinking, to beat your partner at this game.
Investigate the sum of the numbers on the top and bottom faces of a line of three dice. What do you notice?
In each of the pictures the invitation is for you to: Count what you see. Identify how you think the pattern would continue.
Strike it Out game for an adult and child. Can you stop your partner from being able to go?
What happens when you round these numbers to the nearest whole number?
In this problem we are looking at sets of parallel sticks that
cross each other. What is the least number of crossings you can
make? And the greatest?
Compare the numbers of particular tiles in one or all of these
three designs, inspired by the floor tiles of a church in
How many centimetres of rope will I need to make another mat just
like the one I have here?
This activity involves rounding four-digit numbers to the nearest thousand.
In this game for two players, the idea is to take it in turns to choose 1, 3, 5 or 7. The winner is the first to make the total 37.
The sum of the numbers 4 and 1 [1/3] is the same as the product of 4 and 1 [1/3]; that is to say 4 + 1 [1/3] = 4 × 1 [1/3]. What other numbers have the sum equal to the product and can this be so for. . . .
Find some examples of pairs of numbers such that their sum is a
factor of their product. eg. 4 + 12 = 16 and 4 × 12 = 48 and
16 is a factor of 48.
Consider all two digit numbers (10, 11, . . . ,99). In writing down
all these numbers, which digits occur least often, and which occur
most often ? What about three digit numbers, four digit numbers. . . .
Take any two positive numbers. Calculate the arithmetic and geometric means. Repeat the calculations to generate a sequence of arithmetic means and geometric means. Make a note of what happens to the. . . .
What would you get if you continued this sequence of fraction sums?
1/2 + 2/1 =
2/3 + 3/2 =
3/4 + 4/3 =
Choose a couple of the sequences. Try to picture how to make the next, and the next, and the next... Can you describe your reasoning?
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or
subtract consecutive negative numbers?
Spotting patterns can be an important first step - explaining why it is appropriate to generalise is the next step, and often the most interesting and important.
Try entering different sets of numbers in the number pyramids. How does the total at the top change?
These squares have been made from Cuisenaire rods. Can you describe
the pattern? What would the next square look like?
A game for two people, or play online. Given a target number, say 23, and a range of numbers to choose from, say 1-4, players take it in turns to add to the running total to hit their target.
The diagram shows a 5 by 5 geoboard with 25 pins set out in a square array. Squares are made by stretching rubber bands round specific pins. What is the total number of squares that can be made on a. . . .