Brain Teaser Solutions

On this page you can find the solutions to the brain teasers from our My Maths Week Scotland booklets.

Matchstick Puzzle

Here's the original puzzle:

Can you REMOVE exactly THREE matchsticks, to make the above equation true? It can be solved in three different ways.

And here are the three solutions:

Solution 1
Solution 2
Solution 3

Magic Square

Here's the original puzzle:

The challenge was to place the numbers 1-9 in the squares so that the sum of each horizontal, vertical and diagonal row or column adds up to 15. You could use each number only once.

We started you off with number 5 in the middle of the square. 15 - 5 = 10, which means the remaining numbers in each row or column had to add up to 10. So you had to pair up the remaining numbers to make 10: 1 + 9, 2 + 8, 3 + 7 and 4 + 6. To solve the magic square, place the pairs of even numbers in the corner spaces, and the pairs of odd numbers in the remaining spaces.

There are eight different possibilities of placing the numbers, but they are all rotations or reflections of the same pattern:

Latest News and Events


Maths at Work Compilation Packs

We have pulled together all the 'Maths at Work' related activities from our past Activity Packs, to make it easier for you to access this content which can be reused year after year. The compilation packs align with the levels of the Scottish curriculum.


Facing the Future: Edinburgh Science Festival 2024

It's Spring in Edinburgh means, which means the return of the Edinburgh Science Festival (30 March - 14 April)! This years theme is Shaping the Future, and we've browsed through the programme to pick out some of our maths highlights for you.

29th Sep

Science Sunday at the National Museum of Flight

National Museum of Flight | | Free with museum admission
Celebrate Maths Tales with our Science Sunday at the National Museum of Flight