Playing with Number

Playing with Number

We know it's important for children to play around with numbers, big and small, as this exploration can lead to a deeper realisation of the way the world of numbers fits together.  We've chosen some tasks that are exploratory whilst supporting understanding of the four calculations. 

One Big Triangle 

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:
Make one big triangle so the numbers that touch on the small triangles add to 10.


Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:
Noah saw 12 legs walk by into the Ark. How many creatures did he see?

Ladybirds in the Garden 

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:
In Sam and Jill's garden there are two sorts of ladybirds with 7 spots or 4 spots. What numbers of total spots can you make?

Strike it Out 

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:
Use your addition and subtraction skills, combined with some strategic thinking, to beat your partner at this game.

Zios and Zepts 

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:
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?

Highest and Lowest 

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:
Put operations signs between the numbers 3 4 5 6 to make the highest possible number and lowest possible number.

This Pied Piper of Hamelin 

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:
Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!

Four Goodness Sake 

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:
Use 4 four times with simple operations so that you get the answer 12. Can you make 15, 16 and 17 too?

What Are Numbers? 

Age 7 to 18
Ranging from kindergarten mathematics to the fringe of research this informal article paints the big picture of number in a non technical way suitable for primary teachers and older students.