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?
How will you go about finding all the jigsaw pieces that have one peg and one hole?
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?
What is the best way to shunt these carriages so that each train can continue its journey?
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?
Design an arrangement of display boards in the school hall which fits the requirements of different people.
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?
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?
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....?
Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire rods?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
Use the interactivity to listen to the bells ringing a pattern. Now it's your turn! Play one of the bells yourself. How do you know when it is your turn to ring?
How can you put five cereal packets together to make different shapes if you must put them face-to-face?
Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?
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?
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four calculations are correct?
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?
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?
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?
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.
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?
How many models can you find which obey these rules?
Use the interactivity to play two of the bells in a pattern. How do you know when it is your turn to ring, and how do you know which bell to ring?
Building up a simple Celtic knot. Try the interactivity or download the cards or have a go on squared paper.
These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.
Swap the stars with the moons, using only knights' moves (as on a chess board). What is the smallest number of moves possible?
What is the smallest cuboid that you can put in this box so that you cannot fit another that's the same into it?
Can you create jigsaw pieces which are based on a square shape, with at least one peg and one hole?
How many DIFFERENT quadrilaterals can be made by joining the dots on the 8-point circle?
Only one side of a two-slice toaster is working. What is the quickest way to toast both sides of three slices of bread?
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.
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?
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?
Imagine you have an unlimited number of four types of triangle. How many different tetrahedra can you make?
Sitting around a table are three girls and three boys. Use the clues to work out were each person is sitting.
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. . . .
Seven friends went to a fun fair with lots of scary rides. They decided to pair up for rides until each friend had ridden once with each of the others. What was the total number rides?
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.
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?
The Zargoes use almost the same alphabet as English. What does this birthday message say?
What is the smallest number of jumps needed before the white rabbits and the grey rabbits can continue along their path?
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?
Try out the lottery that is played in a far-away land. What is the chance of winning?
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the difference between the two numbers just below it.
Find out what a "fault-free" rectangle is and try to make some of your own.
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
Have a go at this well-known challenge. Can you swap the frogs and toads in as few slides and jumps as possible?