I taught post-secondary mathematics in British Columbia for 29 years, at
Okanagan College in Kelwona for three years, then based at the University of the
Fraser Valley in Abbotsford and Chilliwack for the remaining 26 years. Now I’m
retired and living in Nelson, in the West Kootenays.
In 2006, I began teaching Math for Elementary Teachers and found that while some
of my students could write the weekly quiz in five minutes, others took fifteen.
It’s no fun sitting waiting for others to finish, so I began handing out a
puzzle with each quiz, for those who finished early. It started out purely for
amusement, but soon it became clear that students from all kinds of mathematical
backgrounds were enjoying the puzzles and learning a lot from them. I was
delighted, as many of those students had had unpleasant experiences in formal
mathematics classes and had very little confidence in their ability to think
mathematically. Lo and behold, they were showing me – and themselves – just what
they were capable of. Other students, who had little trouble with the content of
our course, were happy to challenge themselves with harder versions of the
puzzles I assigned.
I also tried out some of these puzzles and games on the students who came to my
university’s annual math contest. They really enjoyed them, as did the more
advanced university mathematics students who helped out with the math contest.
In 2009 my department started offering Math
local elementary and middle schools. We quickly moved from one event per year
to four, such is the demand. These events are a tremendous amount of fun for
everyone, youngsters, their families, and our volunteers alike. They have
provided me with avid testers of commercial and home-made games.
During my sabbatical of 2012/13, I was privileged to share puzzles and games
with over 4000 K-12 students in visits to many, many classrooms. I also gave
workshops for hundreds of teachers and a six-week course as part of Elder
College. I’d had no idea there would be so much interest! (Read more at Puzzles
Over the years I have added many puzzles to my collection, looking for
inspiration to on-line sites and books. I started out sharing my templates and
resources via a Dropbox, but that is not easy to find your way around those
files unless you already know what you’re looking for. So here we are with a
This website is meant to provide an introduction to some of the most easily
accessible logical/mathematical puzzles in a form that is easy to download and
print. I hope you find something to intrigue, puzzle, and delight you, your
students, your children, and/or your grandchildren.