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Square in Square Puzzle

The Square in Square Puzzle is a creation of the brilliant Peter Grabarchuk. It is one of my weekly magnetic puzzles that never made it up on the blog this school year. Imagine that…

square in square puzzle on dry erase board

You are given sixteen rectangles. Among these rectangles, only two can be placed next to one another to form a perfect square with another perfect square depicted on it.

Can you find the two pieces? Or will you be tricked by the fourteen imposter pieces?

I added disc magnets to the back of each piece so that they could easily be stuck to and moved around on my magnetic dry erase board.

instructions for square in square puzzle

At the time I discovered this puzzle and typed it up for my classroom, it was available on, one of my favorite online sources for puzzles.

That website has since been bought out by a jigsaw puzzle company and turned into a website that redirects you to Amazon to sell you jigsaw puzzles.

Thanks to Internet Archive, there is an archived version of the website I can point you to now. Want to browse the other free printable puzzles that used to be available, here’s an archived link to the general collection of puzzles that used to be available.

student attempt at solving square in square puzzle

The only flaw I’ve found with using this square in square puzzle both with a group of teachers at a presentation I gave last summer and with the students in my own classroom is that people don’t read the instructions carefully enough.

I’ve had multiple people try and pair up ALL the pieces instead of finding only the two pieces that actually pair up to form a perfect square in a square.

Puzzle Solutions

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 with information about what you teach and where you teach. I will be happy to forward an answer key to you.


Wednesday 24th of June 2020

This is awesome, my kids are loving it. Thanks for sharing!

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