Frequently Asked Questions

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Analytical thinking skills
  • Reasoning skills
  • Logical approach
  • Relating math to the actual world
  • Applying math on practical situations
  • Develops child’s reasoning skills and makes them a logical thinker
  • Makes them a problem solver by relating math to a practical situation
  • The child starts thinking analytically which helps them to get different approaches to a particular problem
  • Learns to understand the 'why' behind the 'what'
  • Puzzle cards also help the child to keep up the engagement level and develop their interest in maths
  • By working on puzzle cards, a child’s brain develops to a much higher extent when compared to their grade level
  • Brain teasers
  • Math riddles
  • Picture puzzles
  • Logic puzzles
  • Number puzzle
  • Crossword puzzle
  • Geometry puzzles

Free Mathematics Tutorials

Free Mathematics Tutorials

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Grade 7 Maths Problems With Answers

Grade 7 math word problems with answers are presented. Some of these problems are challenging and need more time to solve. The Solutions and explanatiosn are included.

  • In a bag full of small balls, 1/4 of these balls are green, 1/8 are blue, 1/12 are yellow and the remaining 26 white. How many balls are blue?
  • In a school 50% of the students are younger than 10, 1/20 are 10 years old and 1/10 are older than 10 but younger than 12, the remaining 70 students are 12 years or older. How many students are 10 years old?
  • If the length of the side of a square is doubled, what is the ratio of the areas of the original square to the area of the new square?
  • The division of a whole number N by 13 gives a quotient of 15 and a remainder of 2. Find N.

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  • A person jogged 10 times along the perimeter of a rectangular field at the rate of 12 kilometers per hour for 30 minutes. If field has a length that is twice its width, find the area of the field in square meters.
  • A car is traveling 75 kilometers per hour. How many meters does the car travel in one minute?
  • Linda spent 3/4 of her savings on furniture and the rest on a TV. If the TV cost her $200, what were her original savings?
  • Stuart bought a sweater on sale for 30% off the original price and another 25% off the discounted price. If the original price of the sweater was $30, what was the final price of the sweater?
  • 15 cm is the height of water in a cylindrical container of radius r. What is the height of this quantity of water if it is poured into a cylindrical container of radius 2r?
  • John bought a shirt on sale for 25% off the original price and another 25 % off the discounted price. If the final price was $16, what was the price before the first discount?
  • How many inches are in 2000 millimeters? (round your answer to the nearest hundredth of of an inch).
  • The rectangular playground in Tim's school is three times as long as it is wide. The area of the playground is 75 square meters. What is the primeter of the playground?
  • John had a stock of 1200 books in his bookshop. He sold 75 on Monday, 50 on Tuesday, 64 on Wednesday, 78 on Thursday and 135 on Friday. What percentage of the books were not sold?
  • N is one of the numbers below. N is such that when multiplied by 0.75 gives 1. Which number is equal to N? A) 1 1/2 B) 1 1/3 C) 5/3 D) 3/2
  • In 2008, the world population is about 6,760,000,000. Write the 2008 world population in scientific notation.
  • Calculate the circumference of a circular field whose radius is 5 centimeters.

Answers to the Above Problems

  • 6 balls are blue
  • 10 students are 10 years old
  • x = 5/6 meter
  • 20,000 square meters
  • 368 square units
  • 1250 meters per minute
  • 78.74 inches
  • 40 square meters
  • 10π centimeters

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maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Geometry in Year 3 (age 7–8)

In Year 3, children will be expected to use accurate mathematical language to describe properties of a wider range of symmetrical and non-symmetrical shapes. This includes:

  • drawing 2D shapes and making 3D shapes
  • identifying angles greater or less than a right angle
  • identifying horizontal, vertical, parallel and perpendicular lines.

Measurement in Year 3 (age 7–8)

In Year 3, children will be expected to be able to add and subtract measurements, tell the time to the nearest minute and compare durations of time. This includes:

  • measuring and adding to find the perimeter of 2D shapes
  • telling the time using 12-hour and 24-hour clocks, including Roman numerals I to XII for 1 to 12
  • adding and subtracting amounts of money to give change.

Statistics in Year 3 (age 7–8)

In Year 3, children will interpret and present data in a range of ways. This includes:

  • interpreting and making bar charts, pictograms, and tables
  • understanding information presented using scales
  • solving one-step and two-step problems using data.
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  • Help with times tables
  • Ratio & proportion
  • Learning to tell the time
  • Numicon parent guide
  • MyMaths parent guide
  • Maths activity books

Develop Good Habits

17 Fun Problem Solving Activities for Kids

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As a child, I would spend hours putting together puzzles… whether it was 3-D puzzles or figuring out a crossword. I also loved it when teachers would give the class an open-ended question and we had to work in groups to figure out the answer in our own way.

Even something as simple as playing checkers with my brothers gave me the chance to use strategy as a way to win the game. I honestly believe that it’s so important for kids to solve problems at a young age, as it helps them think critically and outside the box.

Table of Contents

So, Why Is It Important To Teach Kids Problem Solving?

I think these kinds of activities are so important for kids to do because it helps them learn how to think analytically and solve problems on their own. It's a great way to get kids to use their imaginations and be creative.

Rote memorization simply does not have the same effect. This type of learning is great for learning facts like historical dates, but it’s not going to help kids figure out how events in history happened and the results.

We take these problem-solving skills into college, the workforce, and travel . My ability to problem solve since childhood has certainly got me through many sticky situations while in a new city or country.

Additionally, problem-solving helps children learn how to find creative solutions to challenges they may face both in and out of the classroom . These activities can also be fun and used in cohesion with school or playtime.

17 Fun Problem-Solving Activities for Kids

1. marble mazes.

This activity was selected because it requires them to think spatially. Spatial learning will benefit kids when they start driving, riding a bike, playing sports,etc.

To do this activity in its simplest form, you will need a piece of paper, a pencil, and some marbles. First, draw a maze on a piece of paper using a pencil.

Make sure to create a start and finish point. Then, place the marbles at the start of the maze. The goal is to get the marbles from the start to the finish by tilting the paper and using gravity to guide the marbles through the maze.

Another example of a marble maze can involve using toilet paper rolls taped together to create a three-dimensional maze. The larger the maze, the harder you can make it.

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Check Price on Amazon!

If you are not into the DIY method, you can always buy a toy maze on Amazon. A good 48 piece puzzle is the Melissa & Doug Underwater Ocean Floor puzzle.

2. The Tower Challenge

Building a tower gives kids the chance to think about gravity, structure, and balance.

To do this activity, you will need some building materials like legos, blocks, or even toilet paper rolls. The challenge is to see how high they can stack the materials without the tower toppling over.

This can be done individually or in teams. An activity like this is good for younger kids and is the building block to learning about harder topics like engineering.

3. The Egg Drop Challenge

The egg drop challenge helps kids learn how to engineer a solution that prevents something from breaking. It requires them to think critically about which materials will best protect something fragile like an egg when dropped from a height.

To do this activity, you will need some eggs and various materials such as straws, cotton balls, bubble wrap, etc. The goal is to construct a device that will protect an egg from breaking upon impact.

This can be done individually or in teams . Teams can even have a competition for the best egg drop device.

As children begin handling, shopping for, and cooking their own food, activities like this will help them understand how to handle breakable items like bottles, eggs, delicate fruit,.etc. Ideally, this is best for age groups 8 and up.

4. The Penny Drop Challenge

This activity was selected because it requires kids to think about physics and how different materials affect sound.

To do this activity, you will need a penny ( or another coin), a cup, and various materials such as paper towels, cotton balls, etc.

The goal is to drop the penny into the cup without making any noise. Begin by placing different materials into the cup and then drop the penny into it. The children should also drop the penny from different heights into the same material to see if/how the impact from a higher drop affects sound.

Group kids into teams or let them try it on their own.

Kids should make note of what type of sounds are made when the penny hits different materials. This is a great activity for kids who are interested in science and physics.

5. The Balloon Race Challenge

This activity was selected because it helps kids learn about aerodynamics and Bernoulli’s principle . It also requires them to think creatively about how to design a balloon-powered vehicle.

To do this activity, you will need balloons, straws, masking tape, and markers. The goal is to design a balloon-powered vehicle that can travel a distance of at least 10 feet. Kids can begin this activity by sketching out their designs on paper.

After they have a basic design, they can begin building their vehicle from various materials. Then kids can explain why they think the balloon traveled or did not travel as far as it did.

6. The Marshmallow Challenge

Marshmallows are not only delicious, but they are also soft and malleable. So kids can have fun using it for some construction projects.

This activity was selected because it requires kids to think creatively about how to build a structure using limited materials. It also helps them learn about engineering and work as a team.

To do this activity, you will need marshmallows and spaghetti noodles. The goal is to build the tallest free-standing structure possible using only marshmallows and spaghetti noodles. If you don't have spaghetti noodles, use something similar like pretzel sticks.

You may even want to establish certain rules like each team can only use a certain number of marshmallows or noodles. A time limit can also make it more fun and challenging.

For more fun activities, check out our post on problem solving exercises for team building .

7. The Balloon Pop Challenge

If you remember your childhood, you probably remember popping balloons for fun at times. But this activity is different because it requires kids to use strategy and critical thinking.

This activity was selected because it helps kids learn about patterns and problem-solving. It is also a lot of fun for kids who like popping balloons. The goal is to create a device that will allow them to pop a balloon without using their hands.

To do this activity, you will need balloons and various materials such as straws, string, paper clips, etc.

8. Picture Pieces Puzzle Game

As mentioned earlier, puzzles are a great pastime – especially in childhood. Kids must think critically about how to put the pieces together to create a certain picture. It also helps them learn about shapes, colors, and other concepts.

problem solving activities | how do you teach a child problem solving skills | are problem-solving games good for kids

You can take a medium to large picture and cut it into pieces. If you have younger kids, you may want to make the pieces larger. However, if you have kids closer to the 8-11 age range, you should be able to provide a challenge and make the pieces smaller.

9. Copy the Block Model

For this challenge, you can build a model out of blocks for the kids to copy. Put kids into groups and make sure each group has the same number of blocks you used for your model.

Make your model block as simple or complex as needed for your child's age group.

Set a time limit and make sure each group starts at the same time.

10. Team Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt is great for kids because they have to search for items and use investigative skills. It is also a lot of fun and can be done both indoors and outdoors .

To do this activity, you will need to create a list of items for the kids to find. The items can be anything from common household items to things you would find outside.

These types of activities can also revolve around a theme like a holiday, movie, or book. For example, if the kids are fans of “Harry Potter” you can make a list of items to find that are related to the movie.

11. Obstacle Course

This activity requires kids to think creatively about how to get from one point to another while maneuvering around obstacles. If you have outdoor space, this can be done with common objects such as hula hoops, cones, etc.

If you don't have access to an outdoor space, you can use common household items to create an indoor obstacle course. For example, you can use chairs, blankets, pillows, etc.

Begin by setting up the course and then timing each child as they complete it. You can also have them race against each other to make it more fun.

Obstacle courses are also great because kids get to be physically active while they are thinking critically.

12. Reading Storybooks

There are many great benefits for kids that read storybooks.  One of the excellent benefits is the ability to problem-solve.  When they read the stories in the books, they see scenarios that cause them to be attached to the various characters they read about. 

So, when they encounter a real-life problem, it is often productive to ask a child how their favorite character would solve that problem.  Your kids can also be encouraged to come up with various options and possible outcomes for some of the situations they may encounter. 

This not only helps kids solve various problems but become more independent as well. 

13. Ask Them Open-Ended Questions

A good way to improve a child's ability to think critically and creatively and improve their ability to solve problems is by asking open-ended questions.  It also helps them to develop healthy personalities .

There are no right or wrong answers to these questions.  In addition, the solution requires more than a simple “yes” or “no” answer.  Furthermore, it allows kids to put some extra thought into their responses. 

Here are some examples of open-ended questions you may want to ask. 

  • What did this experience teach you?
  • Was this easy?  What was easy about it?
  • What this difficult?  What is complicated about it?
  • What may happen next in this situation?
  • How did you come to this solution?
  • What, if anything, would you do differently next time?
  • What can we do to make things more fun next time?

14. Build Various Structures with Toys

Whether wooden blocks, LEGO blocks, or engineering blocks… giving your kid blocks to build whatever their minds can dream up is fun.  In addition, it requires them to think about how they will make a structure, put the pieces together, and creatively ensure the building's function and design. 

fun activities for kids | kids creative activities at home | fun activities for kids near me

You may also want to challenge them to build something more complicated and watch them use their brain power to make it happen. 

15. Acting Out Skits

Impromptu activities like acting out skits help kids identify problems, develop solutions, and execute them.  This process works with multiple kids being divided into teams. 

First, you will want to write down different situations, such as resolving a disagreement between siblings or dealing with bullying on the playground on a piece of paper.  Second, you will fold the paper and place it in a hat or bowl.  

Third, each team will pick a scenario out of the hat.  Finally, you can give the kids a few minutes to discuss their solution and act out. 

16. Solving Moral Dilemmas   

In this simple game, you will help your kids solve simple dilemmas they may find themselves in.  You could write down a situation your child may find themselves in and help them learn the moral way to solve the problem.   

For instance, “The cashier gave them an additional $5 change back on my purchase.  What should they do?”  Another scenario could be, “I saw my friend cheating on a test.  Should I tell on them or let it go?”  A third one could be, “I caught my friends stealing some gum from the store.  What should I do?” 

After writing down the dilemmas and placing them in a bowl, get each child to select one and read it aloud.  Finally, you will help them devise morally correct solutions to the moral dilemma. 

17. Animal Pairing Game  

This is a fun and creative game to help your kids with focus, critical thinking, and team building skills .  In addition, this activity requires an even number of players to participate (4, 6, 8, etc.) 

Before starting the game, you will want to write the names of different animals twice, each on a separate slip of paper.  Then pass out the slips of paper to each individual or team member, instructing them not to share with anyone the name of the animal they received. 

Then the children will perform activities the animals might do without talking or making sounds.  Some of these activities might include:

  • The way the animal cleans or grooms itself
  • The way the animal sleeps
  • The way the animal fights
  • The way the animal eats or drinks
  • The way the animal walks or runs

The goal is for each child to successfully pair up with the other child who has selected the same animal.

How Problem Solving in Childhood Helps in Adulthood

Children are not born with problem-solving skills. It is something that needs to be learned and developed over time .

From babies who learn how to communicate their needs to toddlers who figure out how to get what they want, to children who are starting to understand the consequences of their actions – problem-solving is a process that begins in childhood and continues into adulthood.

Some of the benefits of teaching problem-solving skills to children include:

  • Improved critical thinking skills
  • Better decision-making skills
  • Enhanced creativity
  • Improved communication and collaboration skills
  • Increased confidence

There are many ways to teach problem-solving skills to children. The activities mentioned above are just a few examples. It is important to find activities that are appropriate for the age and abilities of the child.

With practice, children will develop these skills and be better prepared to face challenges in both childhood and adulthood.

Final Thoughts About Fun Problem Solving Activities For Kids

These are just a few ideas to get you started on teaching your child crucial problem solving skills. Perhaps they’ve inspired to come with some of your own, or seek out others? The important thing is to make sure the activity is age-appropriate and challenging enough to engage the kids.

Problem-solving skills are important for kids to learn because they can be applied to various situations in life. These skills also promote critical thinking, which is an important life skill.

There are many other problem-solving activities for kids out there. In time, you’ll find the ones that work best for your child.  And be sure not to forget about your own needs and self-improvement, both of which will make you a better parent and mentor. Here are some useful activities for adults to get your started.

Finally, if you want to level up your parenting skills, then check out this resource that will show you how to get your kids to listen WITHOUT yelling, nagging, or losing control .

problem solving activities for kids | problem solving activities for students | games that promote problem solving for kids

Year 3 Maths Worksheets (age 7-8)

Hundreds of maths worksheets for children ages 7 and 8. Covering times tables, written methods of addition and subtraction and much more. Don't forget our challenges and investigations!

Each category has many resources within so why not jump in and explore the site?

Popular Resources

Have a look at some of our popular resources in this category.

Preview of worksheet Non unit fractions

A non-unit fraction is any fraction which does not have one as a numerator.

Preview of worksheet 2, 5 and 10 times table up to 12

Mixed 2x, 5x and 10x tables up to 12.

Preview of worksheet Year 3 Assessment Paper

Questions which can be used for assessment in Year 3. Please note these are not intended to be used as a set of written questions where the child answers on paper in silence. The questions could be presented over a period of several days and can be read out loud. Encouraging discussion of the questions will give a much greater insight into the child's understanding.

Preview of worksheet Find fractions of numbers

Finding fractions of numbers. Working with halves, quarters, thirds and tenths. Remember, to find one fifth, divide by 5.

Preview of worksheet Complete the fraction sequences

Colour the correct fractions to match the sequences.

Preview of worksheet Find fractions of numbers (2)

More finding fractions of numbers.

Preview of worksheet Division: inverse of multiplication

Division is the inverse of multiplication. If you know one multiplication you can quickly make two division sentences.

Preview of worksheet Find fractions of shapes

Finding fractions of shapes. Makes a change from numbers!

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Fun math for 7-year-olds

Introduce your child to math, develop logical thinking and problem-solving skills with fun educational games.

What topics do our math games cover?

Classification of objects, sets and subsets, sequences and patterns, logical judgements, numbers behind masks, false and true, magic squares, mathematical puzzles, try edcraft kids math & logic games for free, online math for 7-year-olds.

Check out our interactive math games by yourself or together with your child. It only takes 10 minutes and does not require registration. Free of charge. No signup required!

INTERACTIVE GAME TASKS KEEP YOUR CHILDREN INVOLVED THROUGHOUT THE LEARNING PROCESS

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

WELL THOUGHT-OUT PROGRAM

Math games are developed on the basis of the best sources, the expertise of subject experts, methodologists and psychologists.

INTERACTIVE GAME STRUCTURE

The child solves plot game problems and helps the heroes of the game, meanwhile, learning new topics and improving his or her mathematical skills.

KNOWLEDGE TESTS AND REWARDS

At the end of each topic, the child goes through a final game to test and consolidate knowledge and receives a diploma if successful.

Carefully crafted by experts in kids education

Math games and courses are developed by subject experts from top US and international universities. Our games creators are doting parents, committed educators, and lovers of learning!

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

In EdCraft kids develop their math and problem-solving skills by playing fun educational games

How to get a seven-years-old child interested in mathematics.

While studying in the first grade at school, children get acquainted with basic mathematical actions, shapes, and a concept of time. Some of them find it complicated, the others, on the contrary, enjoy it a lot. In any case, our course will be of much use for all of them.

It is very effective to learn in a game format, so we have worked out a plot-driven story that is fully interactive. However, what makes it really beneficial is that the developers are top professors from the best universities worldwide. Thus, a child can play an exciting game and get the best explanation of math basics at the same time.

WHAT ELSE DO WE HAVE IN EDCRAFT?

Complete by yourself or together with your kid. It’s fun, educational and takes only up to 10 minutes for the demo lesson.

CHEMISTRY BASICS

explore the world of particles through gamified experiments

PHYSICS BASICS

learn in a simple way how objects and forces interact

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE

learn to Improve communication and teamwork

FINANCIAL LITERACY

getting familiar with managing money in a fun way

SEX EDUCATION

topics covering relationships without awkwardness

Winner of Best Home & Family Learning Resource in the BETT British Educational Technology Awards

10 essential maths skills for 7 year olds

10 essential maths skills for 7 year olds

  • 6-7 years old

This is a maths skills checklist for children reaching the end of Year 2 (or P3 in N Ireland) and is written to help parents ensure that the early signs of falling behind don't go unnoticed, so maths confidence can be quickly restored.

We've also developed a series of fun maths quizzes which are free and fun for kids to use and give parents private feedback on their child's strengths and identifies any areas which could benefit from a little extra attention. So why not take a Kickstart Quiz? (once you've read the article, of course!)

Take a Free Kickstart Maths Quiz

1) Number: Know one more or less than and ten more or less than any number from 1 to 100

"Write down the number 67 now write the number that is 10 more than this." 

"What about the number that is one less, ten less."

2) Number: Count forward and backward in twos, fives and tens

"Starting at 12 count forward in twos"     "Starting at 60 count backwards in tens"  

3) Number: Mark and read a number on a number line:

"What number is this?"

Image title

"Mark where the number 23 goes on this number line:"

Image title

4) Number: Use place value to 100 ( tens and ones )

"What does the four stand for in 48?"

5) Number: Compare and order numbers to 100

"Put these numbers in order  27  56  23 78 14  smallest first"

6) Addition & Subtraction: Add and subtract to 20 ( including bridging 10 )

"7 + 8 = "           "17 + 9 = "

7) Addition & Subtraction: Missing numbers to 10

" 5 +  __ = 9   what's the missing number?"

8) Multiplication: Find double and half of a number

"Double 7 is "     "Half of 22 is"

9) Multiplication: Use multiplication as “lots of” and that the answer is the same when you change the order

"Two lots of three is?"             "Three lots of two is?"

Image title

10) Multiplication: Know 2, 5 and 10 times tables

"3 x10 = "   "4 x 5 = "     "6 x 2 = "

A good indication your child has really mastered  a skill is if they can answer correctly and quickly. Being hesitant is an indication that mastery isn't quite there.

The good news for parent and learners is that addressing problems in maths is easy when children are young, and in many cases all that's needed is some regular targeted practice. 

I’m Ged, Co-founder of Komodo , ex-maths teacher and dad. If you have any questions please get in touch .

About Komodo –  Komodo is a fun and effective way to boost primary maths skills. Designed for 5 to 11 year olds to use in the home, Komodo uses a little and often approach to learning maths (15 minutes, three to five times per week) that fits into the busy routine. Komodo users develop fluency and confidence in maths – without keeping them at the screen for long .

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And now we've got Komodo English too -  check it out here.

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Homework can be a trigger for some of the worst fights and arguments that we have with our children. Here are some solutions that can help reduce tensions and get homework done without arguments.

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Year 7 Problem Solving

Year 7 Problem Solving - Displaying top 8 worksheets found for this concept.

Some of the worksheets for this concept are Year 7, Handouts emotional regulation social skills problem solving, Word problem practice workbook, Problem solving booklet, Work decision making problem solving, Year 2 use arrays reasoning and problem solving, Maths practical problem solving work, Reasoning problem solving.

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45 Fun and Clever Brain Teasers for Kids with Answers!

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Written by Laney Kennedy

Reviewed by Sarah Tino, M.Ed.

Engage and motivate your students with our adaptive, game-based learning platform!

  • Game-Based Learning
  • What brain teasers are
  • The benefits of brain teasers for kids

Math brain teasers for kids

Sometimes keeping your students engaged during a (long) school day feels like a losing battle. How do you gain their full attention while teaching the skills they need to succeed? How do you turn tough and intimidating concepts into fun, entertaining lessons that actually spark life in the classroom? 

Brain teasers for kids are a great form of game-based learning that not only entertain children but also inspire some creative thought in the classroom. People of all ages can indulge in these playful — yet challenging — activities.

And some examples of when teachers might want to use brain teasers are on a bulletin board in the classroom, as a partnered activity to start a new concept or lesson, or during a rainy day indoor recess box.

We’ve gathered 45 examples of brain teasers for kids with answers, organized by category:

Table of Contents

Language brain teasers for kids :

Riddles ; Language associations ; Lateral thinking problems.

Math brain teasers for kids :

Math riddles ;  Pattern problems ;  Prodigy.

Visual brain teasers for kids :

Spot the difference ;  Rebus puzzles ;  Optical illusions ;  Stroop effect test.

Use the list below to find the perfect brain teaser for your class!

What are brain teasers?

Before you explore our examples, you might be wondering what brain teasers actually are.

Cambridge Dictionary defines a brain teaser as “a problem for which it is hard to find the answer, especially one which people enjoy trying to solve as a game.”

Brain teasers are a type of puzzle — and as the list below reveals, they come in many different forms. Often presented as a riddle, question or activity, brain teasers require a little extra brainpower to solve.

It's important to note that if you have any English language learners in your class, brain teasers for kids might pose a challenge for them. If that's the case, they might need you to walk them through the brain teaser more closely, or you can find ones that better suit their language level.

Brain teasers for kids differ from other complex or abstract problems because they’re usually done for fun. Although you can use them to analyze problem-solving and critical thinking skills, they’re often used as an amusing activity to encourage logical and lateral thinking , or thinking “outside the box.”

45 Brain teasers for kids

We’ve compiled a list of language, math and visual brain teasers to get your students thinking. Get inspired by the examples below — including answers!

Language brain teasers for kids

When you hear the term “brain teaser,” a riddle is likely the first thing that comes to mind. Riddles are perplexing — sometimes misleading — questions or statements that require creative thought to solve.

Riddles are usually fun, and plenty of them can add some humour to your classroom.

Enjoy our list of riddles for kids below!

a) Billy’s mother had five children. The first was named Lala, the second was named Lele, the third was named Lili, the fourth was named Lolo. What was the fifth child named?

b) Choose the correct sentence: “The yolk of the egg is white” or “the yolk of the egg is white.”

c) It’s as light as a feather, but the strongest person can’t hold it for more than five minutes. What is it?

d) The more there is, the less you see. What is it?

e) What gets more wet while it dries?

f) You can find it in Mercury, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn, but not in Venus or Neptune. What is it?

g) It likes food, but water kills it. What is it?

h) What’s full of holes but can still hold water?

i) Which is heavier, a pound of feathers or a pound of rocks?

j) How far can a dog run into the woods?

k) You’re driving a city bus. At the first stop, three women get on. At the second stop, one woman gets off and a man gets on. At the third stop, two children get on. The bus is blue and it’s raining outside in December. What colour is the bus driver’s hair?

l) There are three houses. One is red, one is blue and one is white. If the red house is to the left of the house in the middle, and the blue house is to the right of the house in the middle, where’s the white house?

m) It’s at the center of gravity and you can find it in Venus, but not Mars. What is it?

n) What goes on four feet in the morning, two in the afternoon and three in the evening?  (This is from the classic myth,  Oedipus and the Riddle of the Sphinx )

o) What travels faster: heat or cold?

p) A man was walking in the rain in the middle of nowhere without a coat or an umbrella. He got soaked, but not a single hair on his head was wet. How can this be?

q) A cowboy rode into town on Friday. He stayed in town for three days and rode back out on Friday. How is this possible?

b) Neither. Egg yolks are yellow, not white!

f) The letter “R”

h) A sponge

i) Neither. Both weigh a pound!

j) Halfway. Once it reaches halfway, it’s running  out  of the woods.

k) Whatever colour your hair is. Remember, you’re driving the bus!

l) In Washington, D.C.

m) The letter “V”

n) A human. The times of day represent stages of human life. At the beginning of life, a baby crawls on four “feet.” As a person gets older, they walk on two feet. Later in life, a person will walk on three “feet” (two feet, plus a cane to help them walk).

o) Heat travels faster because you can catch a cold!

p) He was bald.

q) The horse’s name was Friday.

As a bonus, use these riddles to challenge preconceived notions and get students thinking about natural bias .

a) Two boxers are in a match scheduled for 12 rounds. (Pure boxing only - no kicking, UFC takedowns, or anything else). One of the boxers gets knocked out after only six rounds, yet no man throws a punch. How is this possible?

b) A father and son have a car accident and both are very injured. They are taken to separate hospitals for treatment. When the boy is taken in for an operation, the surgeon says, “I can’t do this surgery…. this boy is my son!” How is this possible?

a) The two boxers are women.

b) The surgeon is the boy’s mother.

2. Language associations

These brain teasers for kids explore the complexities of the English language. Use them to boost student knowledge of sounds, words, spelling, categorization and more.a)  Word association : find a word that associates with the following sets of words.

  • Cake, swiss, cottage
  • Glasses, screen, day
  • Cream, cube, cap
  • Knife, fly, cup

b) Find the mystery word . Replace the third letter of each word with a new letter to create a different word. When read vertically, the new letters will reveal the mystery word.

For example, the word MA K E could become MA R E, MA L E, MA T E and so on. It’s your job to figure out which one works to create the mystery word. 

Hint: It’s something you’ll find outside.

c) Find rhyming pairs . Unscramble the words below so that each pair of words rhymes.

  • RBAE & HREAS
  • WNROED & UTRHNDE
  • TUGHAT & HBTUGO
  • ODULC & ODOG

Mystery word: FLOWER

  • BEAR (or BARE) & SHARE
  • WONDER & THUNDER
  • TAUGHT & BOUGHT
  • COULD & GOOD

You can also use printable brain teasers for kids like this one:

brain-teasers-worksheets-for-kids

Image source: Spelling Words Well

Answer: The “happy word” is SMILE.

3. Lateral thinking problems

Lateral thinking problems require creative thinking with an indirect approach.

These questions require logic and careful thought to solve. The most notable example of a lateral thinking problem is the classic Monty Hall problem .

Here are two examples of lateral thinking problems kids can try to solve.

a) The river crossing problem

brain-teasers-for-kids-riddles

Image source: Popular Mechanics

A farmer is travelling with a fox, a goose, and a bag of beans. During his journey, he comes across a river with a boat to cross it.

The farmer can only fit one thing in the boat with him at a time. If left alone together, the fox will eat the goose or the goose will eat the beans. How does the farmer get everything across the river safely?

b) The light bulb problem

fun-brain-teasers-for-kids

There are three light switches outside of a room-- labeled number one, number two, and number three. The door to the room is closed and you can’t see in. All three switches are off.

You need to figure out which switch belongs to which bulb. You can use the switches however you want to, but can only enter the room once. How do you do it?

a) Here’s the step-by-step solution:

  • The farmer brings the goose across the river first (if he leaves the goose alone, it will either eat the beans or be eaten by the fox).
  • The farmer brings either the fox or the beans across and leaves the other one alone.
  • Now the farmer has two items on the other side of the river, including the goose. If he leaves the goose again, the same problem will occur. So, the farmer must bring the goose back to the other side.
  • The farmer brings the other item back (either the fox or the beans) and leaves the goose alone again. The fox and the beans are now on the other side of the river.
  • The farmer returns and brings the goose across the river again.

b) Turn on the first switch and leave it on. Turn on the second switch for a few minutes, and then turn it off again. When you enter the room, one light bulb will be on. You’ll know it goes with switch one because you turned it on. Another bulb will be hot. You’ll know that goes with switch two because it was on for a little while. The bulb that’s off and cold goes with switch three because you didn’t touch it.

Like math puzzles , these brain teasers for kids can increase engagement with math content and inspire your students to work on math concepts and problems outside of regular lessons.

1. Math riddles

These riddles are just as amusing as the ones above, but they’re math-focused . Use them to give students some extra math practice and encourage resourceful thinking.

Math riddles

a) Divide 30 by ½ and add 10. What’s the answer?

b) A clerk at the butcher shop is six feet tall and wears size 10 shoes. What does he weigh?

c) A farmer has 19 sheep on his land. One day, a big storm hits and all but seven run away. How many sheep does the farmer have left?

d) Your sock drawer only contains 18 white socks and 18 blue socks. How many times do you need to reach inside the drawer and take out a sock to guarantee a matching pair?

e) You planted sunflower seeds in your back garden. Every day, the number of flowers doubles. If it takes 52 days for the flowers to fill the garden, how many days would it take for them to fill half the garden?

f) Using only addition, how can you use eight eights to get the number 1,000?

g) When Ashley was 15, her mother was 37. Now, her mother is twice her age. How old is Ashley?

a) It's 70. You’re dividing 30 by ½, not by two. Thirty divided by ½ is the same thing as multiplying it by two, which is 60. Plus 10 makes 70!

b) Meat. He works at the butcher shop, so he weighs meat for a living.

c) Seven. The riddle says  all but seven  run away, meaning there are seven left who didn’t.

d) Three times. On the third time, you’ll get either a white or a blue sock to match with one of the other two you’ve already grabbed.

e) It would take 51 days. If the number of flowers doubles every day, half the garden would be full the day before, on the 51st day.

f) 888 +88 +8 +8 +8

g) Ashley is 22. Her mother is 22 years older, so when Ashley is 22, she’s now half her mother’s age.

2. Pattern problems

These questions require students to identify a pattern before they can answer a particular question. Kids must use creative and logical thinking to find the answers.

4 + 4 = 168

5 + 5 = 2510.

b) What makes this number unique: 8,549,176,320?

c) Solve the pattern puzzle below. Find the missing number to replace the question mark.

printable-brain-teasers-for-kids

Image source: Genius Puzzles

d) Solve the following:

math-brain-teasers-for-kids

Image source: AOL

a) The missing number is 3612. The answer is the number multiplied by itself and then the number added to itself. Six multiplied by six is 36, and six plus six is 12.

b) It contains each one-digit number, zero through nine, listed in alphabetical order.

c) The missing number is 17. Each number in the circle is the sum of the numbers in the opposite quadrant. In this case, the numbers are eight and nine — added together makes 17.

d) The answer is 14 (or 16), if you’re on the other side of the debate .

3. Prodigy Math Game

Screenshot of Prodigy Math Game battle

This math activity is a bit different from others on the list. It’s not a traditional brain teaser, but it can also be used as a fun, skill-building alternative to traditional math class.

Prodigy is a game-based learning platform that takes your students on an online fantasy adventure while they answer standards-aligned math questions. It’s engaging and effective at teaching necessary skills. 

Prodigy's free teacher tools help you differentiate learning, send assessments in-game and even collect student insights!

Visual brain teasers for kids

1. spot the difference.

This ever-popular activity might remind you of your own childhood — and kids still love it! Spot the difference puzzles require lots of deduction and attention to detail.

Here’s an example of a printable spot the difference activity.

printable-brain-teasers-for-kids

Image source: Tim’s Printables

brain-teasers-for-kids-with-answers

2. Rebus puzzles

A rebus is a visual word puzzle that uses lateral thinking to find its intended meaning. The word or phrase is depicted with a visual illustration, including letters and words. Students must think creatively to figure out the meaning from the clues they’re given. 

brain-teasers-games-for-kids

Image source: Wikipedia

brain-teasers-for-kids-with-answers

Image source: Stack Exchange

a) Top secret

b) Think outside the box

Visit the link below if you want more fun rebus puzzles for your students:

3. Optical illusions

Get tricky with your students! Optical illusions use visual tricks that alter the perception of what you’re really seeing. Students will love trying to figure out what’s really going on in these examples.

a) How many legs does the elephant have?

brain-teasers-questions-for-kids

Image source: Optics For Kids

b) Are the two squares different colours?

brain-teasers-for-kids-with-answers

Image source: Brain Den

b) They’re exactly the same colour. If you place your finger over the spot where the squares meet, you can see they’re the same. Try this impossible paper puzzle if you want a more hands-on optical illusion. You can make one to show your class, then have students make their own as a fun brain teaser to show friends and family.

4. Stroop effect test

The Stroop effect was discovered in the 1930s by John Ridley Stroop. During the test, you’re given a list of colour names, with each word being a different colour than what they describe.

The test involves saying the colour of a word, rather than reading the word itself. Your mind must process the two conflicting pieces of information, which slows down reaction speed and requires careful thought to get through.

printable-brain-teasers-for-kids

Image source: The Crafty Classroom

Benefits of brain teasers for kids

You know your students enjoy them, but did you know there are plenty of additional reasons to make brain teasers a regular activity in the classroom?

A study on the attention spans of six-year-olds found children who were given brain teasers were more attentive than those who were not — showing brain teasers were effective at boosting children’s attention spans.   

Brain teasers for kids can also:

  • Strengthen problem solving and critical thinking skills
  • Encourage lateral thinking and build new perspectives
  • Improve cognitive abilities like memory and processing speed
  • Inspire teamwork and communication
  • Engage students and motivate them to learn
  • Provide necessary breaks from traditional class work

How to use brain teasers in the classroom

In addition to their many learning advantages, brain teasers are a great way to break up the day and engage your students. Here are just a few ways you can use brain teasers for kids as a teaching strategy and maximize the benefits in your classroom:

  • Engagement-boosting activity before or after lessons
  • Bonus questions in assignments and tests
  • Optional “free time” activity
  • Encourage team building — split students into groups to solve them together
  • Supplement lessons — choose brain teasers about the subject you’re teaching

Final thoughts on brain teasers for kids

No matter what subject or skill you want to focus on, a brain teaser is a great addition to traditional teaching methods. Plus, it’s something students will actually be excited to do.

Remember that brain teaser are designed to be fun for kids. it’s not about finding the right answer, but the mental exercise they get from trying to find the solution.

Use any of the brain teasers in this list whenever you need a boost of energy in your classroom. Bonus points if you can stump any adults!

Create or log in to your free teacher account on Prodigy – a game-based learning platform for math that’s easy to use for educators and students alike. Aligned with standards across the English-speaking world, it’s used by more than a million teachers and 90 million students.

Cambridge University Faculty of Mathematics

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  • Angles, Polygons, and Geometrical Proof
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Advanced mathematics

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Maths at Home

These groups of tasks for 5 to 7 year olds are part of our wider  Maths at Home feature . Enjoy dipping in! 

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Just Jottings (5-7)

You need nothing more than pencil and paper to work on these tasks.

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Interactive Games and Puzzles (5-7)

These activities all include an online interactivity.

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Maths to Take Your Time Over (5-7)

These tasks are worth exploring over a few days or even a few weeks and may involve printing or interactives.

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Print it Out (5-7)

You need access to a printer to get the most out of these tasks.

maths problem solving for 7 year olds

Homemade Maths (5-7)

You'll need some everyday bits and pieces for these tasks.

Scientists Have Solved the 141-Year-Old ‘Reverse Sprinkler’ Problem

This brain-teaser has baffled physicists since 1883. Thanks to some innovative engineering, it finally makes sense.

water splash from sprinkler

  • For 141 years, physicists have pondered a deceptively difficult question—what would happen if a sprinkler worked in reverse?
  • Two camps formed—one arguing that a water-sucking sprinkler would have to spin clockwise, and another camp pushing for an counter-clockwise motion.
  • Scientists from New York University took care of the problem by designing just such a device, and discovered that a reverse sprinkler would spin counter-clockwise 50 times slower than if it was just a normal sprinkler.

First posed in 1883 by Austrian physicist Ernst Mach and popularized by Nobel laureate Richard Feynman, the “reverse sprinkler” question is relatively simple—if you put an s-shaped sprinkler in a tank of water , and the sprinkler sucked in water, what direction would it spin and why?

But this is where things get tricky. One camp adamantly suggests that the sucking force would pull the nozzle counter-clockwise, while others argue that inflowing water would smack the inside of the nozzle, forcing it clockwise.

“The answer is perfectly clear at first sight,” Feynman wrote in the 1985 autobiographical book, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman . “The trouble was, some guy would think it was perfectly clear one way, and another guy would think it was perfectly clear the other way.”

To finally solve this 141-year-old problem, scientists from the New York University (NYU) created custom sprinkler devices that pushed and sucked in water at controllable rates. Complete with a new kind of ultra-low-friction rotary bearing, according to the NYU press release , the sprinklers were constructed so the researchers could observe what was going on outside and inside the sprinkler. To capture the reverse sprinkler’s fluid dynamics in action, the team also added dyes and microparticles to help illuminate the waterflow via lasers . The results were published in the journal Physics Review Letters in January.

As the sprinkler sucked in water, the NYU scientists discovered that it created a kind of “inside-out rocket ,” which very slowly rotated the sprinkler counter-clockwise.

When the sprinkler works as intended (a.k.a. spraying water) it effectively acts like a mini-rocket, with the water acting as the propellant that spins the sprinkler. When flowing in reverse, however, these jets meet inside the sprinkler chamber—but don’t smash head-on due to the flow caused by the sprinkler’s curved arms. This slight misalignment causes the sprinkler to slowly rotate in reverse, about 50 times slower than when the sprinkler is operating normally.

“Our study solves the problem by combining precision lab experiments with mathematical modeling that explains how a reverse sprinkler operates,” NYU associate professor and senior author Leif Ristroph said in a press release. “We found that the reverse sprinkler spins in the ‘reverse’ or opposite direction when taking in water as it does when ejecting it, and the cause is subtle and surprising.”

Ristroph and his team didn’t undertake this 141-year-old problem just for laughs. Understanding these fluid dynamics could help us better understand the sustainable sources of energy flowing around us, such as “wind in our atmosphere as well as waves and currents in our oceans and rivers,” Ristroph said.

Headshot of Darren Orf

Darren lives in Portland, has a cat, and writes/edits about sci-fi and how our world works. You can find his previous stuff at Gizmodo and Paste if you look hard enough. 

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  1. Maths at Home

    Maths at Home Maths at Home These groups of tasks for 7 to 11 year olds are part of our wider Maths at Home feature. Enjoy dipping in! Just Jottings (7-11) Age 7 to 11 You need nothing more than pencil and paper to work on these tasks. Interactive Games and Puzzles (7-11) Age 7 to 11 These activities all include an online interactivity.

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  21. 45 Fun and Clever Brain Teasers for Kids with Answers!

    1. Math riddles. These riddles are just as amusing as the ones above, but they're math-focused. Use them to give students some extra math practice and encourage resourceful thinking. Math riddles. a) Divide 30 by ½ and add 10. What's the answer? b) A clerk at the butcher shop is six feet tall and wears size 10 shoes. What does he weigh?

  22. Maths at Home

    Maths at Home Maths at Home These groups of tasks for 5 to 7 year olds are part of our wider Maths at Home feature. Enjoy dipping in! Just Jottings (5-7) Age 5 to 7 You need nothing more than pencil and paper to work on these tasks. Interactive Games and Puzzles (5-7) Age 5 to 7 These activities all include an online interactivity.

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  24. Scientists Have Solved the 141-Year-Old 'Reverse Sprinkler' Problem

    To finally solve this 141-year-old problem, scientists from the New York University (NYU) created custom sprinkler devices that pushed and sucked in water at controllable rates.