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'Algebra Match' printed from http://nrich.maths.org/
is one of a series of problems designed to develop learners' team
working skills. Other tasks in the series can be found by going
to this article.
What are you aiming to
For the task:
Every member of the team
has to end up with a set of four cards in front of them that are
related to each other in a similar way. The task is only
successfully completed when everyone on the team has completed
As a team:
- Responding to the needs of others
- Helping others to do things for themselves.
You will need to work in
a team of four. If you have a fifth person available - use them as
an observer (see guidance below).
Distribute the 16 cards
randomly amongst the team (four cards each).
Tackling the Problem
How to play
Players pass cards to other
team members in order to help one another complete their set.
- No one can talk or give non-verbal signals to other members of
- Each member of the team starts with four cards in front of
- The cards in front of each person should be visible to
- Team members can only give cards; they cannot take cards from
- Each team member must have at least two cards in front of them
at all times.
Use an observer to check
that the team obeys the rules and to keep a record of when members
of the team help someone else (rather than, for example, when they
just pass a piece on without looking at what the other person or
the team actually needs).