This article for the young and old talks about the origins of our number system and the important role zero has to play in it.

Using balancing scales what is the least number of weights needed to weigh all integer masses from 1 to 1000? Placing some of the weights in the same pan as the object how many are needed?

Nowadays the calculator is very familiar to many of us. What did people do to save time working out more difficult problems before the calculator existed?

The number 3723(in base 10) is written as 123 in another base. What is that base?

There are two forms of counting on Vuvv - Zios count in base 3 and Zepts count in base 7. One day four of these creatures, two Zios and two Zepts, sat on the summit of a hill to count the legs of. . . .

Three people chose this as a favourite problem. It is the sort of problem that needs thinking time - but once the connection is made it gives access to many similar ideas.

We are used to writing numbers in base ten, using 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9. Eg. 75 means 7 tens and five units. This article explains how numbers can be written in any number base.

This article, written for teachers, looks at the different kinds of recordings encountered in Primary Mathematics lessons and the importance of not jumping to conclusions!

32 x 38 = 30 x 40 + 2 x 8; 34 x 36 = 30 x 40 + 4 x 6; 56 x 54 = 50 x 60 + 6 x 4; 73 x 77 = 70 x 80 + 3 x 7 Verify and generalise if possible.

When the number x 1 x x x is multiplied by 417 this gives the answer 9 x x x 0 5 7. Find the missing digits, each of which is represented by an "x" .

What is the sum of all the digits in all the integers from one to one million?

Think of any three-digit number. Repeat the digits. The 6-digit number that you end up with is divisible by 91. Is this a coincidence?

Choose two digits and arrange them to make two double-digit numbers. Now add your double-digit numbers. Now add your single digit numbers. Divide your double-digit answer by your single-digit answer. . . .

When asked how old she was, the teacher replied: My age in years is not prime but odd and when reversed and added to my age you have a perfect square...

There are six numbers written in five different scripts. Can you sort out which is which?

Four of these clues are needed to find the chosen number on this grid and four are true but do nothing to help in finding the number. Can you sort out the clues and find the number?

Can you arrange the digits 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 into three 3-digit numbers such that their total is close to 1500?

Watch our videos of multiplication methods that you may not have met before. Can you make sense of them?

Take any four digit number. Move the first digit to the end and move the rest along. Now add your two numbers. Did you get a multiple of 11?

Take the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 and imagine them written down in every possible order to give 5 digit numbers. Find the sum of the resulting numbers.

Choose any 3 digits and make a 6 digit number by repeating the 3 digits in the same order (e.g. 594594). Explain why whatever digits you choose the number will always be divisible by 7, 11 and 13.

A three digit number abc is always divisible by 7 when 2a+3b+c is divisible by 7. Why?

Try out some calculations. Are you surprised by the results?

How many six digit numbers are there which DO NOT contain a 5?

Explore the relationship between simple linear functions and their graphs.

Think of a two digit number, reverse the digits, and add the numbers together. Something special happens...

Becky created a number plumber which multiplies by 5 and subtracts 4. What do you notice about the numbers that it produces? Can you explain your findings?

Pick the number of times a week that you eat chocolate. This number must be more than one but less than ten. Multiply this number by 2. Add 5 (for Sunday). Multiply by 50... Can you explain why it. . . .

Powers of numbers behave in surprising ways. Take a look at some of these and try to explain why they are true.

Have a go at balancing this equation. Can you find different ways of doing it?

Number problems for inquiring primary learners.

Number problems at primary level to work on with others.

Can you complete this calculation by filling in the missing numbers? In how many different ways can you do it?

A school song book contains 700 songs. The numbers of the songs are displayed by combining special small single-digit boards. What is the minimum number of small boards that is needed?

Which is quicker, counting up to 30 in ones or counting up to 300 in tens? Why?

Number problems at primary level that may require resilience.

How many more miles must the car travel before the numbers on the milometer and the trip meter contain the same digits in the same order?

Can you work out some different ways to balance this equation?

Amazing as it may seem the three fives remaining in the following `skeleton' are sufficient to reconstruct the entire long division sum.

This addition sum uses all ten digits 0, 1, 2...9 exactly once. Find the sum and show that the one you give is the only possibility.

Carry out cyclic permutations of nine digit numbers containing the digits from 1 to 9 (until you get back to the first number). Prove that whatever number you choose, they will add to the same total.

How many positive integers less than or equal to 4000 can be written down without using the digits 7, 8 or 9?

Investigate the different ways these aliens count in this challenge. You could start by thinking about how each of them would write our number 7.

Consider all two digit numbers (10, 11, . . . ,99). In writing down all these numbers, which digits occur least often, and which occur most often ? What about three digit numbers, four digit numbers. . . .

Consider all of the five digit numbers which we can form using only the digits 2, 4, 6 and 8. If these numbers are arranged in ascending order, what is the 512th number?

The number 27 is special because it is three times the sum of its digits 27 = 3 (2 + 7). Find some two digit numbers that are SEVEN times the sum of their digits (seven-up numbers)?

Can you show that 1^99 + 2^99 + 3^99 + 4^99 + 5^99 is divisible by 5?