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?

Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.

Try to solve this very difficult problem and then study our two suggested solutions. How would you use your knowledge to try to solve variants on the original problem?

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.

I added together some of my neighbours' house numbers. Can you explain the patterns I noticed?

Find out about Magic Squares in this article written for students. Why are they magic?!

This article for teachers describes several games, found on the site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to develop the skills of strategic planning.

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?

Do you notice anything about the solutions when you add and/or subtract consecutive negative numbers?

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?

Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent pair adds up to a square number?

Use the clues about the shaded areas to help solve this sudoku

Each of the main diagonals of this sudoku must contain the numbers 1 to 9 and each rectangle width the numbers 1 to 4.

You need to find the values of the stars before you can apply normal Sudoku rules.

Special clue numbers related to the difference between numbers in two adjacent cells and values of the stars in the "constellation" make this a doubly interesting problem.

Bellringers have a special way to write down the patterns they ring. Learn about these patterns and draw some of your own.

My two digit number is special because adding the sum of its digits to the product of its digits gives me my original number. What could my number be?

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.

Charlie and Abi put a counter on 42. They wondered if they could visit all the other numbers on their 1-100 board, moving the counter using just these two operations: x2 and -5. What do you think?

15 = 7 + 8 and 10 = 1 + 2 + 3 + 4. Can you say which numbers can be expressed as the sum of two or more consecutive integers?

A pair of Sudoku puzzles that together lead to a complete solution.

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.

If you take a three by three square on a 1-10 addition square and multiply the diagonally opposite numbers together, what is the difference between these products. Why?

Four small numbers give the clue to the contents of the four surrounding cells.

The NRICH team are always looking for new ways to engage teachers and pupils in problem solving. Here we explain the thinking behind maths trails.

This Sudoku, based on differences. Using the one clue number can you find the solution?

Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this sudoku.

An extra constraint means this Sudoku requires you to think in diagonals as well as horizontal and vertical lines and boxes of nine.

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.

Replace the letters with numbers to make the addition work out correctly. R E A D + T H I S = P A G E

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.

How have "Warmsnug" arrived at the prices shown on their windows? Which window has been given an incorrect price?

The challenge is to find the values of the variables if you are to solve this Sudoku.

This task encourages you to investigate the number of edging pieces and panes in different sized windows.

A particular technique for solving Sudoku puzzles, known as "naked pair", is explained in this easy-to-read article.

A 2 by 3 rectangle contains 8 squares and a 3 by 4 rectangle contains 20 squares. What size rectangle(s) contain(s) exactly 100 squares? Can you find them all?

Solve the equations to identify the clue numbers in this Sudoku problem.

Given the nets of 4 cubes with the faces coloured in 4 colours, build a tower so that on each vertical wall no colour is repeated, that is all 4 colours appear.

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.

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

The puzzle can be solved with the help of small clue-numbers which are either placed on the border lines between selected pairs of neighbouring squares of the grid or placed after slash marks on. . . .

This Sudoku requires you to do some working backwards before working forwards.

Whenever a monkey has peaches, he always keeps a fraction of them each day, gives the rest away, and then eats one. How long could he make his peaches last for?

Use the differences to find the solution to this Sudoku.

60 pieces and a challenge. What can you make and how many of the pieces can you use creating skeleton polyhedra?

This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?

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.

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.