1. Arrange the digits from 1 to 9 in alphabetical order.
2. Memorise the large number you have created.
3. Close your eyes, can you remember it?
4. How many times can you halve this number (without a calculator) to give a whole number answer?
Topics: Starter  Arithmetic  Number
How did you use this starter? Can you suggest
how teachers could present or develop this resource? Do you have any comments? It is always useful to receive
feedback and helps make this free resource even more useful for Maths teachers anywhere in the world.
Click here to enter your comments.
If you don't have the time to provide feedback we'd really appreciate it if you could give this page a score! We are constantly improving and adding to these starters so it would be really helpful to know which ones are most useful. Simply click on a button below:
This starter has scored a mean of 3.0 out of 5 based on 128 votes.
Previous Day  This starter is for 2 May  Next Day
What are the prime factors of this large alphabetical number?
Your access to the majority of the Transum resources continues to be free but you can help support the continued growth of the website by doing your Amazon shopping using the links on this page. Below is an Amazon search box and some items chosen and recommended by Transum Mathematics to get you started.
Have you read Craig's book yet?Craig Barton must surely be the voice of Mathematics teachers in the UK. His wonderful podcasts interviewing the industry experts have culminated in this wonderful book. As Craig says: "I genuinely believe I have never taught mathematics better, and my students have never learned more. I just wish I had known all of this twelve years ago..." more... "How I wish I’d taught maths' is an extraordinary and important book. Part guide to research, part memoir, part survival handbook, it’s a wonderfully accessible guide to the latest research on teaching mathematics, presented in a disarmingly honest and readable way. I know of no other book that presents as much usable research evidence on the dos and don’ts of mathematics teaching in such a clear and practical way. No matter how long you have been doing it, if you teach mathematics—from primary school to university—this book is for you." Dylan Wiliam, Emeritus Professor of Educational Assessment, UCL. 
Casio Classwiz CalculatorThere is currently a lot of talk about this new calculator being the best in its price range for use in the Maths classroom. The new ClassWiz features a highresolution display making it easier to view numerical formulas and symbols but it isn't a graphical calculator as such (it has the capacity to draw graphs on your smart phone or tablet, via a scannable QR code and an app). As well as basic spreadsheet mode and an equation solving feature you also get the ability to solve quadratic, cubic or quartic polynomial inequalities and the answer is given just as it should be written down, using the correct inequality symbols! This calculator has a highperformance processor and twice the memory of previous models ensuring speedy operation and superior computational power.more... 
Teacher, do your students have
access to computers? 

Here a concise URL for a version of this page without the comments.
Here is the URL which will take them to an activity about recognising prime numbers.
2^{9}×3^{3}×61843
Tip For Teacher
Most people don't know all of the wonderful things our calculators can do. There are just so many buttons and functions.
Do you have this strange FACT function on your calculator? Do you know what it does?
Type a number (48 is a good example) into the calculator then press the equals button.
Next press shift then this button with FACT written over it.
You should now see 2^{4} × 3 in the calculator display.
The function performed the prime factorisation of 48.
Very useful.
So this button can be used to find out if a number is a prime number as the prime factorisation function will return the original number.