Mental Mondays #19
This week we offer a PowerPoint presentation that takes you through nine separate mental challenges. Each slide is based on a puzzle that involves connecting a series of numbers so that the total is always the same.
The puzzles are based on a pattern of lines and circles. Like this:
The children are shown a puzzle and must copy the pattern onto a mini-whiteboard and then, working with a partner, insert the appropriate numbers in the circles to create the same total along each line.
The puzzles offered increase in difficulty and the presentation could be used in multiple ways. The first few slides are simple and would suit younger children; for older children they would make a useful introduction to the idea of the puzzles before moving onto the more complex ones. None of the line patterns should offer too much challenge, but the important concept here is that the children feel comfortable sharing strategies and creating their own puzzles.
Here's a further indication of what the simple PowerPoint screens look like.
Some offer an additional clue, and all link to a suggested solution (although, many varieties of right answers can be created and the children can have success without necessarily duplicating the exact answers displayed... a good follow-up challenge could involve considering how many different correct solutions there could be for any given puzzle!)
If you are a mathstick+ member then you can access an editable version of this PowerPoint from the mathstick+ dashboard.
As always, we really look forward to hearing what you think of this in the comments, and (of course) would really appreciate all your Likes, tweets and Pluses if you enjoy it!