In a square in which the houses are evenly spaced, numbers 3 and 10 are opposite each other. What is the smallest and what is the largest possible number of houses in the square?
Sweets are given out to party-goers in a particular way. Investigate the total number of sweets received by people sitting in different positions.
This challenge involves calculating the number of candles needed on birthday cakes. It is an opportunity to explore numbers and discover new things.
Can you order the digits from 1-3 to make a number which is divisible by 3 so when the last digit is removed it becomes a 2-figure number divisible by 2, and so on?
Exactly 195 digits have been used to number the pages in a book. How many pages does the book have?
Place the numbers 1 to 8 in the circles so that no consecutive numbers are joined by a line.
In how many ways can you stack these rods, following the rules?
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of rabbit there are in these pens?
These are the faces of Will, Lil, Bill, Phil and Jill. Use the clues to work out which name goes with each face.
If we had 16 light bars which digital numbers could we make? How will you know you've found them all?
Can you fill in this table square? The numbers 2 -12 were used to generate it with just one number used twice.
Place eight queens on an chessboard (an 8 by 8 grid) so that none can capture any of the others.
This magic square has operations written in it, to make it into a maze. Start wherever you like, go through every cell and go out a total of 15!
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?
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?
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?
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?
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.
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?
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?
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?
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.
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps to have an ordered approach.
Can you complete this calculation by filling in the missing numbers? In how many different ways can you do it?
Sitting around a table are three girls and three boys. Use the clues to work out were each person is sitting.
On a digital 24 hour clock, at certain times, all the digits are consecutive. How many times like this are there between midnight and 7 a.m.?
Can you work out some different ways to balance this equation?
When intergalactic Wag Worms are born they look just like a cube. Each year they grow another cube in any direction. Find all the shapes that five-year-old Wag Worms can be.
What is the smallest number of coins needed to make up 12 dollars and 83 cents?
Can you rearrange the biscuits on the plates so that the three biscuits on each plate are all different and there is no plate with two biscuits the same as two biscuits on another plate?
The planet of Vuvv has seven moons. Can you work out how long it is between each super-eclipse?
Find the product of the numbers on the routes from A to B. Which route has the smallest product? Which the largest?
On my calculator I divided one whole number by another whole number and got the answer 3.125. If the numbers are both under 50, what are they?
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.
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.
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 article for primary teachers suggests ways in which to help children become better at working systematically.
This problem is based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
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?
Investigate the different numbers of people and rats there could have been if you know how many legs there are altogether!
This tricky challenge asks you to find ways of going across rectangles, going through exactly ten squares.
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?
Make a pair of cubes that can be moved to show all the days of the month from the 1st to the 31st.
There were chews for 2p, mini eggs for 3p, Chocko bars for 5p and lollypops for 7p in the sweet shop. What could each of the children buy with their money?
There are lots of different methods to find out what the shapes are worth - how many can you find?
These activities lend themselves to systematic working in the sense that it helps if you have an ordered approach.
How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?
Tom and Ben visited Numberland. Use the maps to work out the number of points each of their routes scores.
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, focuses on 'open squares'. What would the next five open squares look like?