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.
It is possible to identify a particular card out of a pack of 15
with the use of some mathematical reasoning. What is this reasoning
and can it be applied to other numbers of cards?
The letters of the word ABACUS have been arranged in the shape of a
triangle. How many different ways can you find to read the word
ABACUS from this triangular pattern?
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
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.
Bellringers have a special way to write down the patterns they
ring. Learn about these patterns and draw some of your own.
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?
Countries from across the world competed in a sports tournament. Can you devise an efficient strategy to work out the order in which they finished?
Imagine a stack of numbered cards with one on top. Discard the top,
put the next card to the bottom and repeat continuously. Can you
predict the last card?
An introduction to bond angle geometry.
Four small numbers give the clue to the contents of the four
This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?
Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.
A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.
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?
Label the joints and legs of these graph theory caterpillars so that the vertex sums are all equal.
Can you recreate these designs? What are the basic units? What
movement is required between each unit? Some elegant use of
procedures will help - variables not essential.
Can you use your powers of logic and deduction to work out the missing information in these sporty situations?
A particular technique for solving Sudoku puzzles, known as "naked pair", is explained in this easy-to-read article.
Many natural systems appear to be in equilibrium until suddenly a critical point is reached, setting up a mudslide or an avalanche or an earthquake. In this project, students will use a simple. . . .
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.
Explore this how this program produces the sequences it does. What
are you controlling when you change the values of the variables?
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.
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for the price of one
60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the
pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?
Just four procedures were used to produce a design. How was it
done? Can you be systematic and elegant so that someone can follow
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
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 arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent
pair adds up to a square number?
A man has 5 coins in his pocket. Given the clues, can you work out
what the coins are?
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 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?
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
Place the 16 different combinations of cup/saucer in this 4 by 4 arrangement so that no row or column contains more than one cup or saucer of the same colour.
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?
Rather than using the numbers 1-9, this sudoku uses the nine
different letters used to make the words "Advent Calendar".
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?
You need to find the values of the stars before you can apply normal Sudoku rules.
A Sudoku with a twist.
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
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?
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 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?
An extra constraint means this Sudoku requires you to think in
diagonals as well as horizontal and vertical lines and boxes of
The puzzle can be solved by finding the values of the unknown digits (all indicated by asterisks) in the squares of the $9\times9$ grid.
Make your own double-sided magic square. But can you complete both
sides once you've made the pieces?
You are given the Lowest Common Multiples of sets of digits. Find
the digits and then solve the Sudoku.
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.
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
A package contains a set of resources designed to develop
students’ mathematical thinking. This package places a
particular emphasis on “being systematic” and is
designed to meet. . . .