Math games or maths games if you’re in Australia 🙂 Do you use them? I use them ALL the time. Why? Well, there are plenty of reasons:
- Reason #1 – Fun – students that are having fun are more relaxed and open to making mistakes and learning.
- Reason #2 – Time – time for teachers to observe student understanding in a non-threatening way.
- Reason #3 – Practice – great way to practice skills and test prep.
- Reason #4 – Cooperative learning – encourages co-operation and allows students to explain their thinking to others.
- Reason #7 – Skills – develops strategy and problem solving skills.
So, how do I make maths games work in my classroom? I usually find it best to play any game as a whole class activity first. My students love to try beating me at any game and it’s a great chance to discuss our mathematical thinking aloud to each other. It’s also a chance for me to correct misconceptions at the same time. If I think that a game may be difficult for some students, I will pair them up with more capable students to help them along or I will work with them in a small group with me. Generally, I find that it only takes a couple of times before my students get the hang of any game and then I’ve got a go-to activity ready for when we have spare time or I find another lesson just isn’t working.
Here are some my favourite maths games that I use in my own classroom. Clink on the images to see them in my TpT store: