I recently ran across the E Brainteaser Puzzle. I immediately knew I *had* to create a version of this “E Puzzle” for my classroom. An excerpt of the book Quests and Quandaries: Exploring Intellectual Interests in Depth [link no longer exists] showed up in my google search results. It was through this excerpt that I discovered this delightful brainteaser.
In the E Brainteaser, students are given paper cut-outs of the letters C, E, and L. They are tasked with using all 3 letters (no overlapping allowed) to create a new letter E.
This can be achieved without flipping any of the pieces over, so this will make a perfect magnetic puzzle to put up on my classroom’s dry erase board.
The author of the book poses this as a way to have students practice the problem-solving strategy of “Change Your Perspective.” Because the book poses the question and immediately shares the solution (I guess it is a teacher’s guide…), I didn’t get a chance to attempt to solve this puzzle on my own.
I did give the puzzle to my husband to tackle to see how he would handle it. He tried many different configurations with little success. I ended up having to give him a hint. Once I did this, he immediately found the answer.
E Brainteaser Puzzle (PDF) (1309 downloads)
E Brainteaser Puzzle (Editable Publisher File ZIP) (469 downloads)
If you’re going to use this e brainteaser puzzle with students, I would definitely recommend solving it yourself before presenting it in class!
Want more puzzles? Check out my puzzles page!
I intentionally do not make answers to the printable math puzzles I share on my blog available online because I strive to provide learning experiences for my students that are non-google-able. I would like other teachers to be able to use these puzzles in their classrooms as well without the solutions being easily found on the Internet.
However, I do recognize that us teachers are busy people and sometimes need to quickly reference an answer key to see if a student has solved a puzzle correctly or to see if they have interpreted the instructions properly.
If you are a teacher who is using these puzzles in your classroom, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with information about what you teach and where you teach. I will be happy to forward an answer key to you.
Wednesday 20th of October 2021
Love the E Brainteaser Puzzle.
Wednesday 17th of February 2021
This link does not work - the download does not work.
Thursday 18th of February 2021
I just updated the links to the files for the E Brainteaser Puzzle. So sorry about that! Thanks for letting me know they weren't working. I really appreciate it!
Friday 12th of July 2019
That was fun. I kept thinking, this is impossible, can't be done. Then I read the problem-solving strategy name, and it was easy. Very cool!