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.
Problem solving is at the heart of the NRICH site. All the problems
give learners opportunities to learn, develop or use mathematical
concepts and skills. Read here for more information.
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
Can you put the 25 coloured tiles into the 5 x 5 square so that no column, no row and no diagonal line have tiles of the same colour in them?
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers
and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind
There is a long tradition of creating mazes throughout history and across the world. This article gives details of mazes you can visit and those that you can tackle on paper.
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of
We're excited about this new program for drawing beautiful mathematical designs. Can you work out how we made our first few pictures and, even better, share your most elegant solutions with us?
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
The idea of this game is to add or subtract the two numbers on the dice and cover the result on the grid, trying to get a line of three. Are there some numbers that are good to aim for?
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
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?
Try this matching game which will help you recognise different ways of saying the same time interval.
Use the information to describe these marbles. What colours must be
on marbles that sparkle when rolling but are dark inside?
A game for 2 people. Take turns placing a counter on the star. You win when you have completed a line of 3 in your colour.
Ben and his mum are planting garlic. Use the interactivity to help
you find out how many cloves of garlic they might have had.
First Connect Three game for an adult and child. Use the dice numbers and either addition or subtraction to get three numbers in a straight line.
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four
calculations are correct?
An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.
Can you find all the different triangles on these peg boards, and
find their angles?
This problem is based on a code using two different prime numbers
less than 10. You'll need to multiply them together and shift the
alphabet forwards by the result. Can you decipher the code?
Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no
consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?
Choose four different digits from 1-9 and put one in each box so that the resulting four two-digit numbers add to a total of 100.
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the
difference between the two numbers just below it.
This cube has ink on each face which leaves marks on paper as it is rolled. Can you work out what is on each face and the route it has taken?
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 problem it is not the squares that jump, you do the jumping! The idea is to go round the track in as few jumps as possible.
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the
quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
Have a go at this well-known challenge. Can you swap the frogs and toads in as few slides and jumps as possible?
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all
Try out the lottery that is played in a far-away land. What is the
chance of winning?
How many different triangles can you draw on the dotty grid which each have one dot in the middle?
Two children made up a game as they walked along the garden paths.
Can you find out their scores? Can you find some paths of your own?
Arrange 9 red cubes, 9 blue cubes and 9 yellow cubes into a large 3 by 3 cube. No row or column of cubes must contain two cubes of the same colour.
Can you find out in which order the children are standing in this
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?
Can you put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these
mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.
Frances and Rishi were given a bag of lollies. They shared them out evenly and had one left over. How many lollies could there have been in the bag?
Can you cover the camel with these pieces?
What happens when you try and fit the triomino pieces into these
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?
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?
How many different ways can you find to join three equilateral
triangles together? Can you convince us that you have found them
How many triangles can you make using sticks that are 3cm, 4cm and 5cm long?
What do the numbers shaded in blue on this hundred square have in common? What do you notice about the pink numbers? How about the shaded numbers in the other squares?
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules,
to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
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?
Chandra, Jane, Terry and Harry ordered their lunches from the
sandwich shop. Use the information below to find out who ordered