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?
For this challenge, you'll need to play Got It! Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?
How could Penny, Tom and Matthew work out how many chocolates there
are in different sized boxes?
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?
Imagine starting with one yellow cube and covering it all over with
a single layer of red cubes, and then covering that cube with a
layer of blue cubes. How many red and blue cubes would you need?
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.
Use the animation to help you work out how many lines are needed to draw mystic roses of different sizes.
Imagine we have four bags containing a large number of 1s, 4s, 7s and 10s. What numbers can we make?
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.
Rectangles are considered different if they vary in size or have different locations. How many different rectangles can be drawn on a chessboard?
A three digit number abc is always divisible by 7 when 2a+3b+c is divisible by 7. Why?
If you can copy a network without lifting your pen off the paper and without drawing any line twice, then it is traversable.
Decide which of these diagrams are traversable.
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?
Triangle numbers can be represented by a triangular array of squares. What do you notice about the sum of identical triangle numbers?
Can you explain how this card trick works?
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
Delight your friends with this cunning trick! Can you explain how
The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right
hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of
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?
Here are two kinds of spirals for you to explore. What do you notice?
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.
Imagine a large cube made from small red cubes being dropped into a
pot of yellow paint. How many of the small cubes will have yellow
paint on their faces?
Imagine an infinitely large sheet of square dotty paper on which you can draw triangles of any size you wish (providing each vertex is on a dot). What areas is it/is it not possible to draw?
Think of a number, square it and subtract your starting number. Is
the number you’re left with odd or even? How do the images
help to explain this?
Square numbers can be represented as the sum of consecutive odd
numbers. What is the sum of 1 + 3 + ..... + 149 + 151 + 153?
In each of the pictures the invitation is for you to: Count what you see. Identify how you think the pattern would continue.
This challenge, written for the Young Mathematicians' Award, invites you to explore 'centred squares'.
This article for teachers describes several games, found on the
site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to
develop the skills of strategic planning.
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.
Here are some arrangements of circles. How many circles would I need to make the next size up for each? Can you create your own arrangement and investigate the number of circles it needs?
How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?
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?
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?
This challenge asks you to imagine a snake coiling on itself.
Nim-7 game for an adult and child. Who will be the one to take the last counter?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Three circles have a maximum of six intersections with each other.
What is the maximum number of intersections that a hundred circles
A 2 by 3 rectangle contains 8 squares and a 3 by 4 rectangle
contains 20 squares. What size rectangle(s) contain(s) exactly 100
squares? Can you find them all?
Draw a square. A second square of the same size slides around the
first always maintaining contact and keeping the same orientation.
How far does the dot travel?
This challenge encourages you to explore dividing a three-digit number by a single-digit number.
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?
Can you work out how to win this game of Nim? Does it matter if you go first or second?
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?
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. . . .
This task follows on from Build it Up and takes the ideas into three dimensions!
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?
Can you find all the ways to get 15 at the top of this triangle of numbers?
Investigate the sum of the numbers on the top and bottom faces of a line of three dice. What do you notice?
Find a route from the outside to the inside of this square, stepping on as many tiles as possible.