Resources tagged with: Working systematically

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Broad Topics > Mathematical Thinking > Working systematically

Seven Flipped

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the smallest number of moves it takes to turn these mats upside-down if you can only turn exactly three at a time.

Single Track

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the best way to shunt these carriages so that each train can continue its journey?

Elf Suits

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

If these elves wear a different outfit every day for as many days as possible, how many days can their fun last?

Ribbon Squares

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the largest 'ribbon square' you can make? And the smallest? How many different squares can you make altogether?

Jigsaw Pieces

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How will you go about finding all the jigsaw pieces that have one peg and one hole?

Finding All Possibilities Upper Primary

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so if you work in a systematic way, you won't leave any out.

Cover the Tray

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

These practical challenges are all about making a 'tray' and covering it with paper.

Home City

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Use the clues to work out which cities Mohamed, Sheng, Tanya and Bharat live in.

Professional Circles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Six friends sat around a circular table. Can you work out from the information who sat where and what their profession were?

Ordered Ways of Working Upper Primary

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.

Possible Pieces

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you create jigsaw pieces which are based on a square shape, with at least one peg and one hole?

Bunny Hop

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the smallest number of jumps needed before the white rabbits and the grey rabbits can continue along their path?

Crack the Code

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

The Zargoes use almost the same alphabet as English. What does this birthday message say?

Shunting Puzzle

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Seating Arrangements

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Sitting around a table are three girls and three boys. Use the clues to work out were each person is sitting.

Display Boards

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Design an arrangement of display boards in the school hall which fits the requirements of different people.

Creating Cubes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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.

Counters

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Family Tree

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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.

Encouraging Primary Children to Work Systematically

Age 3 to 11

This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which to help children become better at working systematically.

This Pied Piper of Hamelin

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!

Ancient Runes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Ordered Ways of Working Upper Primary

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.

Pasta Timing

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Fake Gold

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Whose Face?

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.

Calendar Cubes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the month from the 1st to the 31st.

Finding All Possibilities Upper Primary

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

These activities focus on finding all possible solutions so working in a systematic way will ensure none are left out.

Rearranged Rectangle

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many different rectangles can you make using this set of rods?

Team Scream

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Open Boxes

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Twin Corresponding Sudoku III

Age 11 to 16 Challenge Level:

Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary connections.

How Long Does it Take?

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How long does it take to brush your teeth? Can you find the matching length of time?

My New Patio

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the smallest number of tiles needed to tile this patio? Can you investigate patios of different sizes?

Tri.'s

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many triangles can you make on the 3 by 3 pegboard?

Symmetry Challenge

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Systematically explore the range of symmetric designs that can be created by shading parts of the motif below. Use normal square lattice paper to record your results.

Plate Spotting

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

I was in my car when I noticed a line of four cars on the lane next to me with number plates starting and ending with J, K, L and M. What order were they in?

One to Fifteen

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you put the numbers from 1 to 15 on the circles so that no consecutive numbers lie anywhere along a continuous straight line?

Hexpentas

Age 5 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many different ways can you find of fitting five hexagons together? How will you know you have found all the ways?

Seven Square Numbers

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Add the sum of the squares of four numbers between 10 and 20 to the sum of the squares of three numbers less than 6 to make the square of another, larger, number.

Three Sets of Cubes, Two Surfaces

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

How many models can you find which obey these rules?

Square Corners

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

What is the greatest number of counters you can place on the grid below without four of them lying at the corners of a square?

Multiplication Squares

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you work out the arrangement of the digits in the square so that the given products are correct? The numbers 1 - 9 may be used once and once only.

Map Folding

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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?

Uncanny Triangles

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

Can you help the children find the two triangles which have the lengths of two sides numerically equal to their areas?

Building with Rods

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?

The Moons of Vuvv

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

The planet of Vuvv has seven moons. Can you work out how long it is between each super-eclipse?

Painting Possibilities

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

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. . . .

Street Party

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

The challenge here is to find as many routes as you can for a fence to go so that this town is divided up into two halves, each with 8 blocks.

Paw Prints

Age 7 to 11 Challenge Level:

A dog is looking for a good place to bury his bone. Can you work out where he started and ended in each case? What possible routes could he have taken?