The letters in the following addition sum represent the digits 1 ... 9. If A=3 and D=2, what number is represented by "CAYLEY"?

Consider all two digit numbers (10, 11, . . . ,99). In writing down all these numbers, which digits occur least often, and which occur most often ? What about three digit numbers, four digit numbers. . . .

This addition sum uses all ten digits 0, 1, 2...9 exactly once. Find the sum and show that the one you give is the only possibility.

How many solutions can you find to this sum? Each of the different letters stands for a different number.

The number 27 is special because it is three times the sum of its digits 27 = 3 (2 + 7). Find some two digit numbers that are SEVEN times the sum of their digits (seven-up numbers)?

Powers of numbers behave in surprising ways. Take a look at some of these and try to explain why they are true.

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?

Find the values of the nine letters in the sum: FOOT + BALL = GAME

Try out some calculations. Are you surprised by the results?

A school song book contains 700 songs. The numbers of the songs are displayed by combining special small single-digit cards. What is the minimum number of small cards that is needed?

Three people chose this as a favourite problem. It is the sort of problem that needs thinking time - but once the connection is made it gives access to many similar ideas.

Think of any three-digit number. Repeat the digits. The 6-digit number that you end up with is divisible by 91. Is this a coincidence?

Which is quicker, counting up to 30 in ones or counting up to 300 in tens? Why?

In this 100 square, look at the green square which contains the numbers 2, 3, 12 and 13. What is the sum of the numbers that are diagonally opposite each other? What do you notice?

Choose two digits and arrange them to make two double-digit numbers. Now add your double-digit numbers. Now add your single digit numbers. Divide your double-digit answer by your single-digit answer. . . .

There are six numbers written in five different scripts. Can you sort out which is which?

The Number Jumbler can always work out your chosen symbol. Can you work out how?

Number problems at primary level that may require resilience.

This article for primary teachers expands on the key ideas which underpin early number sense and place value, and suggests activities to support learners as they get to grips with these ideas.

Alf describes how the Gattegno chart helped a class of 7-9 year olds gain an awareness of place value and of the inverse relationship between multiplication and division.

This article for primary teachers encourages exploration of two fundamental ideas, exchange and 'unitising', which will help children become more fluent when calculating.

This article develops the idea of 'ten-ness' as an important element of place value.

One of the key ideas associated with place value is that the position of a digit affects its value. These activities support children in understanding this idea.

This feature aims to support you in developing children's early number sense and understanding of place value.

More upper primary number sense and place value tasks.

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

Four of these clues are needed to find the chosen number on this grid and four are true but do nothing to help in finding the number. Can you sort out the clues and find the number?

The number 3723(in base 10) is written as 123 in another base. What is that base?

Write down a three-digit number Change the order of the digits to get a different number Find the difference between the two three digit numbers Follow the rest of the instructions then try. . . .

Pick the number of times a week that you eat chocolate. This number must be more than one but less than ten. Multiply this number by 2. Add 5 (for Sunday). Multiply by 50... Can you explain why it. . . .

Watch our videos of multiplication methods that you may not have met before. Can you make sense of them?

32 x 38 = 30 x 40 + 2 x 8; 34 x 36 = 30 x 40 + 4 x 6; 56 x 54 = 50 x 60 + 6 x 4; 73 x 77 = 70 x 80 + 3 x 7 Verify and generalise if possible.

How many positive integers less than or equal to 4000 can be written down without using the digits 7, 8 or 9?

Choose any 3 digits and make a 6 digit number by repeating the 3 digits in the same order (e.g. 594594). Explain why whatever digits you choose the number will always be divisible by 7, 11 and 13.

There are two forms of counting on Vuvv - Zios count in base 3 and Zepts count in base 7. One day four of these creatures, two Zios and two Zepts, sat on the summit of a hill to count the legs of. . . .

How many six digit numbers are there which DO NOT contain a 5?

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?

A three digit number abc is always divisible by 7 when 2a+3b+c is divisible by 7. Why?

Some Games That May Be Nice or Nasty for an adult and child. Use your knowledge of place value to beat your opponent.

Use your knowledge of place value to try to win this game. How will you maximise your score?

Can you work out some different ways to balance this equation?

Can you complete this calculation by filling in the missing numbers? In how many different ways can you do it?

Find the sum of all three-digit numbers each of whose digits is odd.

In the multiplication calculation, some of the digits have been replaced by letters and others by asterisks. Can you reconstruct the original multiplication?

Have a go at balancing this equation. Can you find different ways of doing it?

In this article, Alf outlines six activities using the Gattegno chart, which help to develop understanding of place value, multiplication and division.

Take any four digit number. Move the first digit to the end and move the rest along. Now add your two numbers. Did you get a multiple of 11?