Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the month from the 1st to the 31st.
The Red Express Train usually has five red carriages. How many ways can you find to add two blue carriages?
The Zargoes use almost the same alphabet as English. What does this birthday message say?
El Crico the cricket has to cross a square patio to get home. He can jump the length of one tile, two tiles and three tiles. Can you find a path that would get El Crico home in three jumps?
What is the smallest number of jumps needed before the white rabbits and the grey rabbits can continue along their path?
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?
These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so if you work in a systematic way, you won't leave any out.
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?
Can you create jigsaw pieces which are based on a square shape, with at least one peg and one hole?
Six friends sat around a circular table. Can you work out from the information who sat where and what their profession were?
How could you put eight beanbags in the hoops so that there are four in the blue hoop, five in the red and six in the yellow? Can you find all the ways of doing this?
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?
Lorenzie was packing his bag for a school trip. He packed four shirts and three pairs of pants. "I will be able to have a different outfit each day", he said. How many days will Lorenzie be away?
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.
Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.
Use the clues to find out who's who in the family, to fill in the family tree and to find out which of the family members are mathematicians and which are not.
My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all the buttons?
Start with three pairs of socks. Now mix them up so that no mismatched pair is the same as another mismatched pair. Is there more than one way to do it?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which to help children become better at working systematically.
In Sam and Jill's garden there are two sorts of ladybirds with 7 spots or 4 spots. What numbers of total spots can you make?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.
My briefcase has a three-number combination lock, but I have forgotten the combination. I remember that there's a 3, a 5 and an 8. How many possible combinations are there to try?
This challenge is about finding the difference between numbers which have the same tens digit.
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?
Use the clues to work out which cities Mohamed, Sheng, Tanya and Bharat live in.
These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so working in a systematic way will ensure none are left out.
If these elves wear a different outfit every day for as many days as possible, how many days can their fun last?
Sitting around a table are three girls and three boys. Use the clues to work out were each person is sitting.
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?
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?
Alice and Brian are snails who live on a wall and can only travel along the cracks. Alice wants to go to see Brian. How far is the shortest route along the cracks? Is there more than one way to go?
Find your way through the grid starting at 2 and following these operations. What number do you end on?
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?
Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?
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.
In how many ways could Mrs Beeswax put ten coins into her three puddings so that each pudding ended up with at least two coins?
How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same colour are next to each other in any direction?
Investigate the different ways you could split up these rooms so that you have double the number.
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?
Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none can capture any of the others.
Using the cards 2, 4, 6, 8, +, - and =, what number statements can you make?
There are 4 jugs which hold 9 litres, 7 litres, 4 litres and 2 litres. Find a way to pour 9 litres of drink from one jug to another until you are left with exactly 3 litres in three of the jugs.
In the planet system of Octa the planets are arranged in the shape of an octahedron. How many different routes could be taken to get from Planet A to Planet Zargon?
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.
Ten cards are put into five envelopes so that there are two cards in each envelope. The sum of the numbers inside it is written on each envelope. What numbers could be inside the envelopes?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.
Find the sum and difference between a pair of two-digit numbers. Now find the sum and difference between the sum and difference! What happens?
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which route has the smallest product? Which the largest?