Try to solve this very difficult problem and then study our two suggested solutions. How would you use your knowledge to try to solve variants on the original problem?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
You have twelve weights, one of which is different from the rest. Using just 3 weighings, can you identify which weight is the odd one out, and whether it is heavier or lighter than the rest?
Take three whole numbers. The differences between them give you three new numbers. Find the differences between the new numbers and keep repeating this. What happens?
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.
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.
Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!
Each of the main diagonals of this sudoku must contain the numbers 1 to 9 and each rectangle width the numbers 1 to 4.
The challenge is to find the values of the variables if you are to solve this Sudoku.
In this Sudoku, there are three coloured "islands" in the 9x9 grid. Within each "island" EVERY group of nine cells that form a 3x3 square must contain the numbers 1 through 9.
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?
Use the clues about the shaded areas to help solve this sudoku
A pair of Sudokus with lots in common. In fact they are the same problem but rearranged. Can you find how they relate to solve them both?
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?
Many numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers. For example, 15=7+8 and 10=1+2+3+4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed in this way?
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this sudoku.
You are given the Lowest Common Multiples of sets of digits. Find the digits and then solve the Sudoku.
A Sudoku with a twist.
This is a variation of sudoku which contains a set of special clue-numbers. Each set of 4 small digits stands for the numbers in the four cells of the grid adjacent to this set.
The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind maths trails.
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?
Special clue numbers related to the difference between numbers in two adjacent cells and values of the stars in the "constellation" make this a doubly interesting problem.
An irregular tetrahedron is composed of four different triangles. Can such a tetrahedron be constructed where the side lengths are 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 units of length?
A Latin square of order n is an array of n symbols in which each symbol occurs exactly once in each row and exactly once in each column.
Label this plum tree graph to make it totally magic!
Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or subtract consecutive negative numbers?
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for the price of one
Solve the equations to identify the clue numbers in this Sudoku problem.
This Sudoku requires you to do some working backwards before working forwards.
Charlie and Abi put a counter on 42. They wondered if they could visit all the other numbers on their 1-100 board, moving the counter using just these two operations: x2 and -5. What do you think?
Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent pair adds up to a square number?
My two digit number is special because adding the sum of its digits to the product of its digits gives me my original number. What could my number be?
A Sudoku with a twist.
You have been given nine weights, one of which is slightly heavier than the rest. Can you work out which weight is heavier in just two weighings of the balance?
Find all the ways of placing the numbers 1 to 9 on a W shape, with 3 numbers on each leg, so that each set of 3 numbers has the same total.
The puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers which are either placed on the border lines between selected pairs of neighbouring squares of the grid or placed after slash marks on. . . .
This Sudoku puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers on the border lines between pairs of neighbouring squares of the grid.
This Sudoku combines all four arithmetic operations.
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
Just four procedures were used to produce a design. How was it done? Can you be systematic and elegant so that someone can follow your logic?
A cinema has 100 seats. Show how it is possible to sell exactly 100 tickets and take exactly £100 if the prices are £10 for adults, 50p for pensioners and 10p for children.
Arrange the four number cards on the grid, according to the rules, to make a diagonal, vertical or horizontal line.
Different combinations of the weights available allow you to make different totals. Which totals can you make?
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?
60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?
Play the divisibility game to create numbers in which the first two digits make a number divisible by 2, the first three digits make a number divisible by 3...
A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.
Explore this how this program produces the sequences it does. What are you controlling when you change the values of the variables?
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
If you take a three by three square on a 1-10 addition square and multiply the diagonally opposite numbers together, what is the difference between these products. Why?