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Challenge level: Challenge Level:1 Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:3

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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Generalising

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Three Times Seven

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

A three digit number abc is always divisible by 7 when 2a+3b+c is divisible by 7. Why?

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Crossings

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

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?

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Repeaters

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Choose any 3 digits and make a 6 digit number by repeating the 3 digits in the same order (e.g. 594594). Explain why whatever digits you choose the number will always be divisible by 7, 11 and 13.

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Elevenses

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?

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Three Dice

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Investigate the sum of the numbers on the top and bottom faces of a line of three dice. What do you notice?

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GOT IT Now

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

For this challenge, you'll need to play Got It! Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?

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Round the Four Dice

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

This activity involves rounding four-digit numbers to the nearest thousand.

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Always, Sometimes or Never? Number

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?

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Reverse to Order

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Take any two digit number, for example 58. What do you have to do to reverse the order of the digits? Can you find a rule for reversing the order of digits for any two digit number?

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Take Three from Five

Stage: 3 and 4 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Caroline and James pick sets of five numbers. Charlie chooses three of them that add together to make a multiple of three. Can they stop him?

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What Numbers Can We Make?

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Imagine we have four bags containing a large number of 1s, 4s, 7s and 10s. What numbers can we make?

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Summing Consecutive Numbers

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Many numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers. For example, 15=7+8 and 10=1+2+3+4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed in this way?

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Broken Toaster

Stage: 2 Short Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?

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Round and Round the Circle

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

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.

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Up and Down Staircases

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

One block is needed to make an up-and-down staircase, with one step up and one step down. How many blocks would be needed to build an up-and-down staircase with 5 steps up and 5 steps down?

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Always, Sometimes or Never?

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Are these statements relating to odd and even numbers always true, sometimes true or never true?

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Snake Coils

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

This challenge asks you to imagine a snake coiling on itself.

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Calendar Calculations

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

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 happens?

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Number Tracks

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Ben’s class were cutting up number tracks. First they cut them into twos and added up the numbers on each piece. What patterns could they see?

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Nim-7 for Two

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Nim-7 game for an adult and child. Who will be the one to take the last counter?

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Special Sums and Products

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

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.

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Adding in Rows

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

List any 3 numbers. It is always possible to find a subset of adjacent numbers that add up to a multiple of 3. Can you explain why and prove it?

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Mini-max

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

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. . . .

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Roll over the Dice

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Watch this video to see how to roll the dice. Now it's your turn! What do you notice about the dice numbers you have recorded?

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Division Rules

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

This challenge encourages you to explore dividing a three-digit number by a single-digit number.

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Got it for Two

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?

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What Numbers Can We Make Now?

Stage: 3 and 4 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?

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Spirals, Spirals

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Here are two kinds of spirals for you to explore. What do you notice?

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Walking the Squares

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Find a route from the outside to the inside of this square, stepping on as many tiles as possible.

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One O Five

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

You can work out the number someone else is thinking of as follows. Ask a friend to think of any natural number less than 100. Then ask them to tell you the remainders when this number is divided by. . . .

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Cut it Out

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

Can you dissect an equilateral triangle into 6 smaller ones? What number of smaller equilateral triangles is it NOT possible to dissect a larger equilateral triangle into?

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Button-up Some More

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?

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Oddly

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is odd.

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Christmas Chocolates

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there are in different sized boxes?

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Magic Letters

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Charlie has made a Magic V. Can you use his example to make some more? And how about Magic Ls, Ns and Ws?

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Tiling

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

An investigation that gives you the opportunity to make and justify predictions.

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Chess

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

What would be the smallest number of moves needed to move a Knight from a chess set from one corner to the opposite corner of a 99 by 99 square board?

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Mystic Rose

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Use the animation to help you work out how many lines are needed to draw mystic roses of different sizes.

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Sums and Differences 2

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

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?

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Picturing Triangle Numbers

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Triangle numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?

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Magic Constants

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

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?

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Consecutive Negative Numbers

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or subtract consecutive negative numbers?

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Journeys in Numberland

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number of points each of their routes scores.

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Round the Three Dice

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

What happens when you round these three-digit numbers to the nearest 100?

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Centred Squares

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

This challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.

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Round the Dice Decimals 1

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Use two dice to generate two numbers with one decimal place. What happens when you round these numbers to the nearest whole number?

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Make 37

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Four bags contain a large number of 1s, 3s, 5s and 7s. Pick any ten numbers from the bags above so that their total is 37.

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More Magic Potting Sheds

Stage: 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

The number of plants in Mr McGregor's magic potting shed increases overnight. He'd like to put the same number of plants in each of his gardens, planting one garden each day. How can he do it?

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Doplication

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

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?

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Maths Trails

Stage: 2 and 3

The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind maths trails.