## Number Puzzles

I have recently been investigating the use of number puzzles in the Mathematics classroom. As a puzzle solver, I find them both relaxing and motivating. To reach that final solution gives the solver a clear sense of purpose and a sense of satisfaction when the goal is achieved.

Carefully chosen puzzles can also help students consolidate their arithmetic and problem solving skills. For example Sudoku puzzles do not require any arithmetic while Ken-Ken or Kakuro do.

How the puzzles are used is also important. With Kakuro for example, I have scrounged some number tiles from other games to turn it in to a hands on puzzle. This makes it much more accessible to novice solvers who can use a “trial and error” approach. A partly solved Kakuro puzzle with tiles is shown in the image below:

An excellent selection of Kakuro puzzles may be downloaded in PDF format from krazydad or akidsmath. In my new compilation – PUZZLE MATH – I have included the following types of puzzle:

2. ALFAKODO
3. CALCUDOKU
4. COLOUR ME
5. CROSSFIGURE
6. CROSSNUMBER
7. FRACTION SQUARE
8. JOIN THE DOTS
9. KAKURO
10. LOGIC PROBLEMS
11. MAGIC SQUARES
12. MENTAL MATHS
13. MINUTE CHALLENGE
14. MONEY MATHS
15. NUMBERS
16. NUMBER MAZES
17. NUMBER PYRAMIDS
18. RECTANGLES