You may also like

Hallway Borders

What are the possible dimensions of a rectangular hallway if the number of tiles around the perimeter is exactly half the total number of tiles?

Not a Polite Question

When asked how old she was, the teacher replied: My age in years is not prime but odd and when reversed and added to my age you have a perfect square...


Four rods, two of length a and two of length b, are linked to form a kite. The linkage is moveable so that the angles change. What is the maximum area of the kite?

Sum and Differences

Age 11 to 14 Short
Challenge Level

Answer: $28, 30, 42$

Using algebra
Middle number is $n$

$\begin{align}n-2\ \ +\ \ n\ \ +\ \ n+12 &= 100\\
\Rightarrow 3n+10&=100\\
\Rightarrow 3n&=90\\
\Rightarrow n&=30\end{align}$

So $n=30$, $n+12=42$ and $n-2=28$.

Guess and check - differences
Try some numbers which are the right distances apart

$\begin{align}30 + 32 + 44 &= 106\\
&=100 + 6\\
&= 100+3\times2\end{align}$
$\therefore (30-2)+(32-2)+(44-2)$ should work


Guess and check - sum
Try some numbers which add up to $100$


Need to make largest number larger, always balancing out changes:
$(33-2)+\ \quad33\ \quad+(34+2)=31+33+36=100$



You can find more short problems, arranged by curriculum topic, in our short problems collection.