Take 5 cubes of one colour and 2 of another colour. How many different ways can you join them if the 5 must touch the table and the 2 must not touch the table?
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.
10 space travellers are waiting to board their spaceships. There are two rows of seats in the waiting room. Using the rules, where are they all sitting? Can you find all the possible ways?
Can you shunt the trucks so that the Cattle truck and the Sheep truck change places and the Engine is back on the main line?
Take a rectangle of paper and fold it in half, and half again, to make four smaller rectangles. How many different ways can you fold it up?
Kate has eight multilink cubes. She has two red ones, two yellow, two green and two blue. She wants to fit them together to make a cube so that each colour shows on each face just once.
In how many ways can you fit two of these yellow triangles together? Can you predict the number of ways two blue triangles can be fitted together?
What is the best way to shunt these carriages so that each train can continue its journey?
How will you go about finding all the jigsaw pieces that have one peg and one hole?
Design an arrangement of display boards in the school hall which fits the requirements of different people.
Using different numbers of sticks, how many different triangles are you able to make? Can you make any rules about the numbers of sticks that make the most triangles?
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
Can you work out how many cubes were used to make this open box? What size of open box could you make if you had 112 cubes?
Hover your mouse over the counters to see which ones will be removed. Click to remove them. The winner is the last one to remove a counter. How you can make sure you win?
A dog is looking for a good place to bury his bone. Can you work out where he started and ended in each case? What possible routes could he have taken?
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....?
When I fold a 0-20 number line, I end up with 'stacks' of numbers on top of each other. These challenges involve varying the length of the number line and investigating the 'stack totals'.
An activity making various patterns with 2 x 1 rectangular tiles.
Are all the possible combinations of two shapes included in this set of 27 cards? How do you know?
How can you put five cereal packets together to make different shapes if you must put them face-to-face?
The ancient Egyptians were said to make right-angled triangles using a rope with twelve equal sections divided by knots. What other triangles could you make if you had a rope like this?
A tetromino is made up of four squares joined edge to edge. Can this tetromino, together with 15 copies of itself, be used to cover an eight by eight chessboard?
What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that you cannot fit another that's the same into it?
How can you arrange the 5 cubes so that you need the smallest number of Brush Loads of paint to cover them? Try with other numbers of cubes as well.
Swap the stars with the moons, using only knights' moves (as on a chess board). What is the smallest number of moves possible?
How many triangles can you make on the 3 by 3 pegboard?
A magician took a suit of thirteen cards and held them in his hand face down. Every card he revealed had the same value as the one he had just finished spelling. How did this work?
How many DIFFERENT quadrilaterals can be made by joining the dots on the 8-point circle?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four calculations are correct?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, involves open-topped boxes made with interlocking cubes. Explore the number of units of paint that are needed to cover the boxes. . . .
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?
Building up a simple Celtic knot. Try the interactivity or download the cards or have a go on squared paper.
Let's say you can only use two different lengths - 2 units and 4 units. Using just these 2 lengths as the edges how many different cuboids can you make?
Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire rods?
The planet of Vuvv has seven moons. Can you work out how long it is between each super-eclipse?
This magic square has operations written in it, to make it into a maze. Start wherever you like, go through every cell and go out a total of 15!
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?
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.
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?
When intergalactic Wag Worms are born they look just like a cube. Each year they grow another cube in any direction. Find all the shapes that five-year-old Wag Worms can be.
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
A merchant brings four bars of gold to a jeweller. How can the jeweller use the scales just twice to identify the lighter, fake bar?
What is the greatest number of counters you can place on the grid below without four of them lying at the corners of a square?
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive numbers are joined by a line.
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!
This challenge is to design different step arrangements, which must go along a distance of 6 on the steps and must end up at 6 high.