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Figure This: Math Challenges for Families

Figure This: Math Challenges for Families is a website developed by a team including the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Level 3 problem February 2015

Level 3 String Problem

Pale has a piece of string 24 centimetres long. He ties the ends together and then lays it out so that it makes a rectangle. He notices that the length of the long sides is twice the length of the short sides.

How long are the sides of the rectangle?

Level 2 problem February 2015

Level 2 String Problem

Chris has a 20cm long piece of string. He wants to cut it into two pieces that are different lengths. 

If each piece needs to be an exact number of centimetres in legth, how many different ways can he cut the string?

Level 1 problem February 2015

Level 1 String Problem

A 30cm long piece of string is cut into two pieces. One piece is twice as long as the other.

How long is the longer piece?

Positive aspects of the introduction

Suggested improvements

What happened with my students

Level 3 problem December 2014

The 500 Problem

Here’s a subtraction problem.

In the two subtraction sums below, a and b each stand for digits.

If the two subtraction sums give the same answer, what digits do a and b stand for?




Level 2 problem December 2014

Little Magic Squares

Tui has just discovered magic squares. Magic squares are grids of numbers where the numbers in each row, column and diagonal all add to give the same sum.
She decided to make all of the 3x3 magic squares that she could just using the numbers 1, 2 and 3.
How many could she make?

Level 1 problem December 2014

Well, Well!

Freddo has had a nice swim in the bottom of the well and decides that now is the time to get out.
Freddo climbs 3m up the wall of the well and then rests.
But the wall is slippery and he then slips down 1m. He is so tired he goes to sleep for the rest of the day.
The next day he does the same thing - climbs up 3m, slips back 1m, and goes to sleep.

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