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Do you trust your calculator too much? News

by David Shaw, 7 November 2019 | 6 comments

Picture of a child working at a desk with pen and paper and laptop.

Imagine you’re at university, doing a maths quiz, with a calculator provided. The problem you’re tasked with reads, “Your grandmother was born in 1942, how old was she in 1994?” You think for a moment and realise it’s a subtraction problem. Into your calculator, you type “1994 – 1942”, and then triumphantly, you record the…

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Broken calculator Brainteaser

by David Shaw, 8 August 2018 | 4 comments

Brain icon

Imagine your calculator is broken. Although it will still display numbers, only the 4 key, + key, = key and clear key work. Starting at 0, can you get the calculator to display 1000? What’s the fastest way, with the fewest button presses?

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Counting by division Activity

by David Shaw, 5 December 2016 | 0 comments

An electric calculator

Let’s look at a few interesting patterns you can get by dividing. Some of these patterns need a lot of digits, so get the best calculator you can find.

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Magic calculator Activity

by David Shaw, 27 March 2016 | 0 comments


Are you a magician? Or a mathematician! Guess someone’s number with this cool trick.

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Double Helix

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