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?
Are these statements relating to odd and even numbers always true, sometimes true or never true?
What happens when you add three numbers together? Will your answer be odd or even? How do you know?
Look at three 'next door neighbours' amongst the counting numbers. Add them together. What do you notice?
Nine cross country runners compete in a team competition in which there are three matches. If you were a judge how would you decide who would win?
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?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
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.
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. . . .
Can you find different ways of creating paths using these paving slabs?
Who said that adding couldn't be fun?
Replace each letter with a digit to make this addition correct.
Use your logical reasoning to work out how many cows and how many sheep there are in each field.
Choose any three by three square of dates on a calendar page...
Can you arrange the numbers 1 to 17 in a row so that each adjacent pair adds up to a square number?
Carry out cyclic permutations of nine digit numbers containing the digits from 1 to 9 (until you get back to the first number). Prove that whatever number you choose, they will add to the same total.
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.
I added together some of my neighbours' house numbers. Can you explain the patterns I noticed?
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.
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?
Arrange the numbers 1 to 16 into a 4 by 4 array. Choose a number. Cross out the numbers on the same row and column. Repeat this process. Add up you four numbers. Why do they always add up to 34?
In this article for primary teachers we consider in depth when we might reason which helps us understand what reasoning 'looks like'.
This article for primary teachers suggests ways in which we can help learners move from being novice reasoners to expert reasoners.
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.
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.
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 Tower of Hanoi is an ancient mathematical challenge. Working on the building blocks may help you to explain the patterns you notice.
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. . . .
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.
Powers of numbers behave in surprising ways. Take a look at some of these and try to explain why they are true.
How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?
Imagine we have four bags containing a large number of 1s, 4s, 7s and 10s. What numbers can we make?
Imagine we have four bags containing numbers from a sequence. What numbers can we make now?
Advent Calendar 2011 - a mathematical activity for each day during the run-up to Christmas.
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.
When number pyramids have a sequence on the bottom layer, some interesting patterns emerge...
Consider the equation 1/a + 1/b + 1/c = 1 where a, b and c are natural numbers and 0 < a < b < c. Prove that there is only one set of values which satisfy this equation.
There are four children in a family, two girls, Kate and Sally, and two boys, Tom and Ben. How old are the children?
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
Are these statements always true, sometimes true or never true?
In this 7-sandwich: 7 1 3 1 6 4 3 5 7 2 4 6 2 5 there are 7 numbers between the 7s, 6 between the 6s etc. The article shows which values of n can make n-sandwiches and which cannot.
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. . . .
Use the numbers in the box below to make the base of a top-heavy pyramid whose top number is 200.
We have exactly 100 coins. There are five different values of coins. We have decided to buy a piece of computer software for 39.75. We have the correct money, not a penny more, not a penny less! Can. . . .
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. . . .
What are the missing numbers in the pyramids?
I start with a red, a blue, a green and a yellow marble. I can trade any of my marbles for three others, one of each colour. Can I end up with exactly two marbles of each colour?
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?
I start with a red, a green and a blue marble. I can trade any of my marbles for two others, one of each colour. Can I end up with five more blue marbles than red after a number of such trades?
Do you know how to find the area of a triangle? You can count the squares. What happens if we turn the triangle on end? Press the button and see. Try counting the number of units in the triangle now. . . .