Imagine that the puzzle pieces of a jigsaw are roughly a
rectangular shape and all the same size. How many different puzzle
pieces could there be?
Start with three pairs of socks. Now mix them up so that no
mismatched pair is the same as another mismatched pair. Is there
more than one way to do it?
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How
will you know you've found them all?
El Crico the cricket has to cross a square patio to get home. He
can jump the length of one tile, two tiles and three tiles. Can you
find a path that would get El Crico home in three jumps?
Explore the different snakes that can be made using 5 cubes.
You cannot choose a selection of ice cream flavours that includes totally what someone has already chosen. Have a go and find all the different ways in which seven children can have ice cream.
There are 78 prisoners in a square cell block of twelve cells. The
clever prison warder arranged them so there were 25 along each wall
of the prison block. How did he do it?
My briefcase has a three-number combination lock, but I have
forgotten the combination. I remember that there's a 3, a 5 and an
8. How many possible combinations are there to try?
Zumf makes spectacles for the residents of the planet Zargon, who
have either 3 eyes or 4 eyes. How many lenses will Zumf need to
make all the different orders for 9 families?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so
that you have double the number.
You have two egg timers. One takes 4 minutes exactly to empty and
the other takes 7 minutes. What times in whole minutes can you
measure and how?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square
below so that each side adds to the same total.
Use the interactivity to help get a feel for this problem and to find out all the possible ways the balls could land.
Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
In this maze of hexagons, you start in the centre at 0. The next
hexagon must be a multiple of 2 and the next a multiple of 5. What
are the possible paths you could take?
Here are some rods that are different colours. How could I make a dark green rod using yellow and white rods?
How many different ways can you find to join three equilateral triangles together? Can you convince us that you have found them all?
There are nine teddies in Teddy Town - three red, three blue and three yellow. There are also nine houses, three of each colour. Can you put them on the map of Teddy Town according to the rules?
How many triangles can you make using sticks that are 3cm, 4cm and 5cm long?
When newspaper pages get separated at home we have to try to sort
them out and get things in the correct order. How many ways can we
arrange these pages so that the numbering may be different?
Ana and Ross looked in a trunk in the attic. They found old cloaks
and gowns, hats and masks. How many possible costumes could they
The challenge here is to find as many routes as you can for a fence
to go so that this town is divided up into two halves, each with 8
If you have three circular objects, you could arrange them so that
they are separate, touching, overlapping or inside each other. Can
you investigate all the different possibilities?
There are to be 6 homes built on a new development site. They could
be semi-detached, detached or terraced houses. How many different
combinations of these can you find?
Winifred Wytsh bought a box each of jelly babies, milk jelly bears,
yellow jelly bees and jelly belly beans. In how many different ways
could she make a jolly jelly feast with 32 legs?
How many different rhythms can you make by putting two drums on the
The Red Express Train usually has five red carriages. How many ways
can you find to add two blue carriages?
Lorenzie was packing his bag for a school trip. He packed four
shirts and three pairs of pants. "I will be able to have a
different outfit each day", he said. How many days will Lorenzie be
How many different shapes can you make by putting four right-
angled isosceles triangles together?
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different
ways could you score 44?
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?
Use the clues to work out which cities Mohamed, Sheng, Tanya and
Bharat live in.
In a bowl there are 4 Chocolates, 3 Jellies and 5 Mints. Find a way
to share the sweets between the three children so they each get the
kind they like. Is there more than one way to do it?
Move from the START to the FINISH by moving across or down to the
next square. Can you find a route to make these totals?
Investigate the different sounds you can make by putting the owls
and donkeys on the wheel.
In this investigation, you must try to make houses using cubes. If
the base must not spill over 4 squares and you have 7 cubes which
stand for 7 rooms, what different designs can you come up with?
Arrange the numbers 1 to 6 in each set of circles below. The sum of each side of the triangle should equal the number in its centre.
Arrange 3 red, 3 blue and 3 yellow counters into a three-by-three square grid, so that there is only one of each colour in every row and every column
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the
triangle adds to the same total.
This challenging activity involves finding different ways to distribute fifteen items among four sets, when the sets must include three, four, five and six items.
Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins
to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?
Take three differently coloured blocks - maybe red, yellow and blue. Make a tower using one of each colour. How many different towers can you make?
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the
month from the 1st to the 31st.
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other
numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
Using all ten cards from 0 to 9, rearrange them to make five prime
numbers. Can you find any other ways of doing it?
How many ways can you find of tiling the square patio, using square
tiles of different sizes?
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.
How can you put five cereal packets together to make different
shapes if you must put them face-to-face?