When I fold a 0-20 number line, I end up with 'stacks' of numbers on top of each other. These challenges involve varying the length of the number line and investigating the 'stack totals'.
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. . . .
Suppose there is a train with 24 carriages which are going to be put together to make up some new trains. Can you find all the ways that this can be done?
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?
Here you see the front and back views of a dodecahedron. Each vertex has been numbered so that the numbers around each pentagonal face add up to 65. Can you find all the missing numbers?
Can you put the numbers 1 to 8 into the circles so that the four calculations are correct?
You have two egg timers. One takes 4 minutes exactly to empty and the other takes 7 minutes. What times in whole minutes can you measure and how?
Place six toy ladybirds into the box so that there are two ladybirds in every column and every row.
There are 78 prisoners in a square cell block of twelve cells. The clever prison warder arranged them so there were 25 along each wall of the prison block. How did he do it?
First Connect Three game for an adult and child. Use the dice numbers and either addition or subtraction to get three numbers in a straight line.
Place the numbers 1 to 10 in the circles so that each number is the difference between the two numbers just below it.
Arrange eight of the numbers between 1 and 9 in the Polo Square below so that each side adds to the same total.
These two group activities use mathematical reasoning - one is numerical, one geometric.
You have 5 darts and your target score is 44. How many different ways could you score 44?
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?
Have a go at this game which involves throwing two dice and adding their totals. Where should you place your counters to be more likely to win?
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!
This problem is based on a code using two different prime numbers less than 10. You'll need to multiply them together and shift the alphabet forwards by the result. Can you decipher the code?
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?
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.
Ben has five coins in his pocket. How much money might he have?
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!
Using the statements, can you work out how many of each type of rabbit there are in these pens?
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, invites you to explore the different combinations of scores that you might get on these dart boards.
Can you see why 2 by 2 could be 5? Can you predict what 2 by 10 will be?
Can you put plus signs in so this is true? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = 99 How many ways can you do it?
A lady has a steel rod and a wooden pole and she knows the length of each. How can she measure out an 8 unit piece of pole?
Three children are going to buy some plants for their birthdays. They will plant them within circular paths. How could they do this?
Exactly 195 digits have been used to number the pages in a book. How many pages does the book have?
Zumf makes spectacles for the residents of the planet Zargon, who have either 3 eyes or 4 eyes. How many lenses will Zumf need to make all the different orders for 9 families?
Put the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 into the squares so that the numbers on each circle add up to the same amount. Can you find the rule for giving another set of six numbers?
There are 44 people coming to a dinner party. There are 15 square tables that seat 4 people. Find a way to seat the 44 people using all 15 tables, with no empty places.
Fill in the missing numbers so that adding each pair of corner numbers gives you the number between them (in the box).
This is an adding game for two players.
This task, written for the National Young Mathematicians' Award 2016, focuses on 'open squares'. What would the next five open squares look like?
What do the digits in the number fifteen add up to? How many other numbers have digits with the same total but no zeros?
Follow the directions for circling numbers in the matrix. Add all the circled numbers together. Note your answer. Try again with a different starting number. What do you notice?
Start with four numbers at the corners of a square and put the total of two corners in the middle of that side. Keep going... Can you estimate what the size of the last four numbers will be?
Write the numbers up to 64 in an interesting way so that the shape they make at the end is interesting, different, more exciting ... than just a square.
This task follows on from Build it Up and takes the ideas into three dimensions!
If you had any number of ordinary dice, what are the possible ways of making their totals 6? What would the product of the dice be each time?
We can arrange dots in a similar way to the 5 on a dice and they usually sit quite well into a rectangular shape. How many altogether in this 3 by 5? What happens for other sizes?
In a Magic Square all the rows, columns and diagonals add to the 'Magic Constant'. How would you change the magic constant of this square?
Place the digits 1 to 9 into the circles so that each side of the triangle adds to the same total.
In this section from a calendar, put a square box around the 1st, 2nd, 8th and 9th. Add all the pairs of numbers. What do you notice about the answers?
Can you arrange 5 different digits (from 0 - 9) in the cross in the way described?
This dice train has been made using specific rules. How many different trains can you make?
Cherri, Saxon, Mel and Paul are friends. They are all different ages. Can you find out the age of each friend using the information?
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?
This challenge focuses on finding the sum and difference of pairs of two-digit numbers.