Number problems at primary level that may require resilience.
Look on the back of any modern book and you will find an ISBN code. Take this code and calculate this sum in the way shown. Can you see what the answers always have in common?
Skippy and Anna are locked in a room in a large castle. The key to that room, and all the other rooms, is a number. The numbers are locked away in a problem. Can you help them to get out?
Using some or all of the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division and using the digits 3, 3, 8 and 8 each once and only once make an expression equal to 24.
Ben’s class were cutting up number tracks. First they cut them into twos and added up the numbers on each piece. What patterns could they see?
Place the numbers from 1 to 9 in the squares below so that the difference between joined squares is odd. How many different ways can you do this?
The Scot, John Napier, invented these strips about 400 years ago to help calculate multiplication and division. Can you work out how to use Napier's bones to find the answer to these multiplications?
Number problems at primary level to work on with others.
Can you put the numbers 1-5 in the V shape so that both 'arms' have the same total?
Bernard Bagnall recommends some primary school problems which use numbers from the environment around us, from clocks to house numbers.
Throughout these challenges, the touching faces of any adjacent dice must have the same number. Can you find a way of making the total on the top come to each number from 11 to 18 inclusive?
There is a clock-face where the numbers have become all mixed up. Can you find out where all the numbers have got to from these ten statements?
A game for 2 people using a pack of cards Turn over 2 cards and try to make an odd number or a multiple of 3.
This article for primary teachers encourages exploration of two fundamental ideas, exchange and 'unitising', which will help children become more fluent when calculating.
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, focuses on 'open squares'. What would the next five open squares look like?
Can you draw a continuous line through 16 numbers on this grid so that the total of the numbers you pass through is as high as possible?
Arrange three 1s, three 2s and three 3s in this square so that every row, column and diagonal adds to the same total.
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.
Look carefully at the numbers. What do you notice? Can you make another square using the numbers 1 to 16, that displays the same properties?
I was looking at the number plate of a car parked outside. Using my special code S208VBJ adds to 65. Can you crack my code and use it to find out what both of these number plates add up to?
Can you make square numbers by adding two prime numbers together?
Use your logical-thinking skills to deduce how much Dan's crisps and ice-cream cost altogether.
Investigate the totals you get when adding numbers on the diagonal of this pattern in threes.
Investigate what happens when you add house numbers along a street in different ways.
I throw three dice and get 5, 3 and 2. Add the scores on the three dice. What do you get? Now multiply the scores. What do you notice?
Here are the prices for 1st and 2nd class mail within the UK. You have an unlimited number of each of these stamps. Which stamps would you need to post a parcel weighing 825g?
The clockmaker's wife cut up his birthday cake to look like a clock face. Can you work out who received each piece?
Cassandra, David and Lachlan are brothers and sisters. They range in age between 1 year and 14 years. Can you figure out their exact ages from the clues?
Mrs Morgan, the class's teacher, pinned numbers onto the backs of three children. Use the information to find out what the three numbers were.
Well now, what would happen if we lost all the nines in our number system? Have a go at writing the numbers out in this way and have a look at the multiplications table.
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.
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!
Where can you draw a line on a clock face so that the numbers on both sides have the same total?
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?
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different ways could you score 44?
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?
What is happening at each box in these machines?
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the triangle adds to the same total.
Can you substitute numbers for the letters in these sums?
Can you score 100 by throwing rings on this board? Is there more than way to do it?
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?
Winifred Wytsh bought a box each of jelly babies, milk jelly bears, yellow jelly bees and jelly belly beans. In how many different ways could she make a jolly jelly feast with 32 legs?
Try out this number trick. What happens with different starting numbers? What do you notice?
This article gives you a few ideas for understanding the Got It! game and how you might find a winning strategy.
Investigate the different distances of these car journeys and find out how long they take.
If the answer's 2010, what could the question be?
How would you count the number of fingers in these pictures?
Can you each work out the number on your card? What do you notice? How could you sort the cards?