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Broad Topics > Using, Applying and Reasoning about Mathematics > Working systematically

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Seven Flipped

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.

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Making Maths: Double-sided Magic Square

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both sides once you've made the pieces?

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Are You Well Balanced?

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Can you work out how to balance this equaliser? You can put more than one weight on a hook.

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Growing Garlic

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Ben and his mum are planting garlic. Use the interactivity to help you find out how many cloves of garlic they might have had.

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Same Length Trains

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

How many trains can you make which are the same length as Matt's, using rods that are identical?

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Red Even

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

You have 4 red and 5 blue counters. How many ways can they be placed on a 3 by 3 grid so that all the rows columns and diagonals have an even number of red counters?

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Nineteen Hexagons

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

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?

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Multiples Grid

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

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Lots of Lollies

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

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?

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One to Fifteen

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?

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Arrangements

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Is it possible to place 2 counters on the 3 by 3 grid so that there is an even number of counters in every row and every column? How about if you have 3 counters or 4 counters or....?

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Greater Than or Less Than?

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Use the numbers and symbols to make this number sentence correct. How many different ways can you find?

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Seven Pots of Plants

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

There are seven pots of plants in a greenhouse. They have lost their labels. Perhaps you can help re-label them.

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The Pet Graph

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Tim's class collected data about all their pets. Can you put the animal names under each column in the block graph using the information?

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Snails' Trails

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Alice and Brian are snails who live on a wall and can only travel along the cracks. Alice wants to go to see Brian. How far is the shortest route along the cracks? Is there more than one way to go?

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One of Thirty-six

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Can you find the chosen number from the grid using the clues?

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Whose Sandwich?

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Chandra, Jane, Terry and Harry ordered their lunches from the sandwich shop. Use the information below to find out who ordered each sandwich.

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Briefcase Lock

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

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?

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Symmetry Challenge

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Systematically explore the range of symmetric designs that can be created by shading parts of the motif below. Use normal square lattice paper to record your results.

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Counters

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Hover your mouse over the counters to see which ones will be removed. Click to remover them. The winner is the last one to remove a counter. How you can make sure you win?

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Zargon Glasses

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

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Polo Square

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.

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Family Tree

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Use the clues to find out who's who in the family, to fill in the family tree and to find out which of the family members are mathematicians and which are not.

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Plate Spotting

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

I was in my car when I noticed a line of four cars on the lane next to me with number plates starting and ending with J, K, L and M. What order were they in?

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Ancient Runes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

The Vikings communicated in writing by making simple scratches on wood or stones called runes. Can you work out how their code works using the table of the alphabet?

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Calendar Cubes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the month from the 1st to the 31st.

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Adding Plus

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you put plus signs in so this is true? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = 99 How many ways can you do it?

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Factor Lines

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules, to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.

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Cover the Camel

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Can you cover the camel with these pieces?

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Eight Queens

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none can capture any of the others.

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2,4,6,8

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can you make?

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1 to 8

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive numbers are joined by a line.

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Room Doubling

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.

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It Figures

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Suppose we allow ourselves to use three numbers less than 10 and multiply them together. How many different products can you find? How do you know you've got them all?

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Pouring the Punch Drink

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

There are 4 jugs which hold 9 litres, 7 litres, 4 litres and 2 litres. Find a way to pour 9 litres of drink from one jug to another until you are left with exactly 3 litres in three of the jugs.

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Octa Space

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In the planet system of Octa the planets are arranged in the shape of an octahedron. How many different routes could be taken to get from Planet A to Planet Zargon?

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Route Product

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which route has the smallest product? Which the largest?

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Code Breaker

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

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The Pied Piper of Hamelin

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!

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Consecutive Numbers

Age 7 to 14 Challenge Level:

An investigation involving adding and subtracting sets of consecutive numbers. Lots to find out, lots to explore.

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Ice Cream

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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.

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Pasta Timing

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Nina must cook some pasta for 15 minutes but she only has a 7-minute sand-timer and an 11-minute sand-timer. How can she use these timers to measure exactly 15 minutes?

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Calcunos

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?

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Jumping Cricket

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

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?

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Buying a Balloon

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

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Tessellate the Triominoes

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

What happens when you try and fit the triomino pieces into these two grids?

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Triangle Edges

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

How many triangles can you make using sticks that are 3cm, 4cm and 5cm long?

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Mixed-up Socks

Age 5 to 7 Challenge Level:

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?

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Rabbits in the Pen

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of rabbit there are in these pens?

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Bean Bags for Bernard's Bag

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can you find all the ways of doing this?