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Math games to play at home

November 05, 2007

Instructions for three math games that can be played at home with younger children:

Rolling for 50

"Rolling for 50" is a wonderful game that helps children learn how to navigate on a number grid. In this game, they roll a dice to see how many hops they are to move and which direction they should move.

The rules of the game are simple. They are spelled out on a card that would say, for instance, "5 = three steps back."

They each have a marker (bear, cheerio, penny, eraser, etc.), number grid, rule card and a dice. The students should put their marker on 0. They each roll the dice and follow the directions on the rule card.


The first player to reach 50 wins.

Bears in a Cave

This game teaches compliments of 10 and missing addends.

At school, each pair of children is given a margarine cup with 10 bears in it. The cup is the cave. The children play "rock, paper, scissors" to determine who goes first.

The winner covers his eyes while the other player hides bears under the cup. Then, the child uncovers his eyes.

He can see how many bears are "out" of the cave. He can use his number grid to count how many bears must be in the cave, then guesses the amount.

The children can check the amount by unveiling the bears in the cave.

At home, you can use any small objects like pennies, beans, crackers and marshmallows.


Dominos are not just for standing in a row and knocking down.

In class, students use dominos to play "Top It." Children add the dots on both sides of the domino together. The player with the highest sum takes everyone's dominoes.

Source: Fairview Elementary School Math Night literature

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