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Maths - In the spotlight

Back-to-school maths

From couture calculations to maths magic, TES maths adviser Craig Barton recommends his favourite resources to start the new school year:

- Lateral thinking puzzles: More than 30 questions, such as: "There are six eggs in the basket. Six people each take one of the eggs. How can it be that one egg is left in the basket?" (Answer: the last person took the basket with the last egg still inside.) This is one of the most popular resources on the TES website and helps to improving thinking skills.

- Fashion mystery: catwalk model Amelie has to get to her fashion show, but she is notorious for being late. Armed with the show's schedule, the journey of her distance, speed equations and other facts, pupils have to work out whether Amelie will get to the show on time.

- Mathemagic: a booklet stuffed with magic tricks using a range of mathematical ideas. This is a good way to grab pupils' attention at the beginning of lessons.

For more back to school ideas, see the TES Back-to-School Maths collection at

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