Christmas Presents

Five presents were bought for Christmas

Present Present

The red and purple presents together cost £39,

The purple and blue presents together cost £25,

The blue and gold presents together cost £19,

The gold and green presents together cost £19,

The green and red presents together cost £36

What is the total cost of all five presents?

Present Present Present

A Christmas Mathematics Lesson Starter Of The Day


Topics: Starter | Algebra | Problem Solving | Xmas

You can find many more ChristMaths activities at:


  • Mark Murray,
  • Hi,
    I'm not a teacher. I'm a concerned parent and I'd like to go over a math problem with my kids every morning before school. I'd love to be able to see the solutions to this. Is that possible?

    [Transum: Mark, if you scroll down the page you will find the place where answers are available to Transum subscribers. There is also a link to subscribe. Happy Christmas.]
  • Josh,
  • This was challenging, but I like the seasonal ring to it.
  • Moi (internet Safety!!), USA
  • Good problem but it would be nice if it was in dollars not pounds (yes, I know-stupid americans just have to have their way. Sorry.)

    [Transum: Good idea Moi. The facility to change the currency has now been added. You can find the button lower down the page.]
  • Transum,
  • If you are not a Transum subscriber and cannot see the answer below you may like to hear that the solution to this problem is a lot easier to work out than you may think. Don't try elaborate methods of solving simultaneous equations trying to find the cost of each present individually. Instead think laterally about totals! I hope that's not a spoiler and that you still have fun puzzling out the answer to this festive teaser!

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This starter has scored a mean of 3.2 out of 5 based on 363 votes.

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Globe of Flags

This activity is suitable for students of mathematics all around the world. Use the button below to change the currency symbol used to make it more relevant to your students. You may wish to choose an unfamiliar currency to extend your students' experience.

Globe of Flags


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Apple iPad Pro

The analytics show that more and more people are accessing Transum Mathematics via an iPad as it is so portable and responsive. The iPad has so many other uses in addition to solving Transum's puzzles and challenges and it would make an excellent gift for anyone.

The redesigned Retina display is as stunning to look at as it is to touch. It all comes with iOS, the world's most advanced mobile operating system. iPad Pro. Everything you want modern computing to be. more...

Before giving an iPad as a Christmas gift you could add a link to iPad Maths to the home screen.

Math with Bad Drawings

I had been tutoring the wonderful Betsy for five years. When the day came for our last ever session together before the end of her Year 13, I received this beautiful book as a gift of appreciation.

This a very readable book by Ben Orlin. I'm really enjoying the humour in the writing and the drawings are great.

Ben Orlin answers maths' three big questions: Why do I need to learn this? When am I ever going to use it? Why is it so hard? The answers come in various forms-cartoons, drawings, jokes, and the stories and insights of an empathetic teacher who believes that mathematics should belong to everyone.

A Compendium Of 	Mathematical Methods

A Compendium Of Mathematical Methods

How many different methods do you know to solve simultaneous equations? To multiply decimals? To find the nth term of a sequence?

A Compendium of Mathematical Methods brings together over one hundred different approaches from classrooms all over the world, giving curious mathematicians the opportunity to explore fascinating methods that they've never before encountered.

If you teach mathematics to any age group in any country, you are guaranteed to learn lots of new things from this delightful book. It will deepen your subject knowledge and enhance your teaching, whatever your existing level of expertise. It will inspire you to explore new approaches with your pupils and provide valuable guidance on explanations and misconceptions. more...

Online Maths Shop

Laptops In Lessons

Teacher, do your students have access to computers?
Do they have iPads or Laptops in Lessons?

Whether your students each have a TabletPC, a Surface or a Mac, this activity lends itself to eLearning (Engaged Learning).

Laptops In Lessons

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Student Activity



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