Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
Look at what happens when you take a number, square it and subtract your answer. What kind of number do you get? Can you prove it?
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
In this article for primary teachers we consider in depth when we might reason which helps us understand what reasoning 'looks like'.
Are these statements relating to odd and even numbers always true, sometimes true or never true?
This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which we can help learners move from being novice reasoners to expert reasoners.
Look at three 'next door neighbours' amongst the counting numbers. Add them together. What do you notice?
This article introduces the idea of generic proof for younger children and illustrates how one example can offer a proof of a general result through unpacking its underlying structure.
Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent pair adds up to a square number?
Who said that adding couldn't be fun?
You can work out the number someone else is thinking of as follows. Ask a friend to think of any natural number less than 100. Then ask them to tell you the remainders when this number is divided by. . . .
In the following sum the letters A, B, C, D, E and F stand for six distinct digits. Find all the ways of replacing the letters with digits so that the arithmetic is correct.
Replace each letter with a digit to make this addition correct.
I added together some of my neighbours' house numbers. Can you explain the patterns I noticed?
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?
A game for 2 players that can be played online. Players take it in turns to select a word from the 9 words given. The aim is to select all the occurrences of the same letter.
Use your knowledge of place value to try to win this game. How will you maximise your score?
Make a set of numbers that use all the digits from 1 to 9, once and once only. Add them up. The result is divisible by 9. Add each of the digits in the new number. What is their sum? Now try some. . . .
Which set of numbers that add to 10 have the largest product?
Can you find different ways of creating paths using these paving slabs?
Spotting patterns can be an important first step - explaining why it is appropriate to generalise is the next step, and often the most interesting and important.
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. . . .
This jar used to hold perfumed oil. It contained enough oil to fill granid silver bottles. Each bottle held enough to fill ozvik golden goblets and each goblet held enough to fill vaswik crystal. . . .
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many sheep there are in each field.
Imagine we have four bags containing a large number of 1s, 4s, 7s and 10s. What numbers can we make?
Powers of numbers behave in surprising ways. Take a look at some of these and try to explain why they are true.
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?
Three dice are placed in a row. Find a way to turn each one so that the three numbers on top of the dice total the same as the three numbers on the front of the dice. Can you find all the ways to do. . . .
Find some triples of whole numbers a, b and c such that a^2 + b^2 + c^2 is a multiple of 4. Is it necessarily the case that a, b and c must all be even? If so, can you explain why?
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.
Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?
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. . . .
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
If you can copy a network without lifting your pen off the paper and without drawing any line twice, then it is traversable. Decide which of these diagrams are traversable.
How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?
Choose a couple of the sequences. Try to picture how to make the next, and the next, and the next... Can you describe your reasoning?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
Some puzzles requiring no knowledge of knot theory, just a careful inspection of the patterns. A glimpse of the classification of knots and a little about prime knots, crossing numbers and. . . .
This article stems from research on the teaching of proof and offers guidance on how to move learners from focussing on experimental arguments to mathematical arguments and deductive reasoning.
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.
Use the numbers in the box below to make the base of a top-heavy pyramid whose top number is 200.
Here are three 'tricks' to amaze your friends. But the really clever trick is explaining to them why these 'tricks' are maths not magic. Like all good magicians, you should practice by trying. . . .
Is it possible to rearrange the numbers 1,2......12 around a clock face in such a way that every two numbers in adjacent positions differ by any of 3, 4 or 5 hours?
A little bit of algebra explains this 'magic'. Ask a friend to pick 3 consecutive numbers and to tell you a multiple of 3. Then ask them to add the four numbers and multiply by 67, and to tell you. . . .
Baker, Cooper, Jones and Smith are four people whose occupations are teacher, welder, mechanic and programmer, but not necessarily in that order. What is each person’s occupation?
From a group of any 4 students in a class of 30, each has exchanged Christmas cards with the other three. Show that some students have exchanged cards with all the other students in the class. How. . . .
In how many ways can you arrange three dice side by side on a surface so that the sum of the numbers on each of the four faces (top, bottom, front and back) is equal?