Not all of us a bursting with creative game ideas, but there are
several ways to go about creating a game that will assist even the
busiest and most reluctant game designer.
In this article for teachers, Liz Woodham describes the criteria she uses to choose mathematical games for the classroom and shares some examples from NRICH.
Gillian Hatch analyses what goes on when mathematical games are
used as a pedagogic device.
This article, the second in the series, looks at some different types of games and the sort of mathematical thinking they can develop.
This article supplies teachers with information that may be useful in better understanding the nature of games and their role in teaching and learning mathematics.
Four Go game for an adult and child. Will you be the first to have four numbers in a row on the number line?
Shut the Box game for an adult and child. Can you turn over the cards which match the numbers on the dice?
An old game but lots of arithmetic!
This challenge is a game for two players. Choose two numbers from the grid and multiply or divide, then mark your answer on the number line. Can you get four in a row before your partner?
A game for 2 or more people. Starting with 100, subratct a number from 1 to 9 from the total. You score for making an odd number, a number ending in 0 or a multiple of 6.
In this game for two players, the aim is to make a row of four coins which total one dollar.
Some Games That May Be Nice or Nasty for an adult and child. Use your knowledge of place value to beat your opponent.
A game for 2 or more players. Practise your addition and subtraction with the aid of a game board and some dried peas!
In this game for two players, the idea is to take it in turns to choose 1, 3, 5 or 7. The winner is the first to make the total 37.
In this game, you can add, subtract, multiply or divide the numbers
on the dice. Which will you do so that you get to the end of the
number line first?
A game for 2 players. Practises subtraction or other maths
Got It game for an adult and child. How can you play so that you know you will always win?
In this matching game, you have to decide how long different events take.
A game for 2 people. Use your skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to blast the asteroids.
Have a go at this game which involves throwing two dice and adding
their totals. Where should you place your counters to be more
likely to win?
In this game for two players, you throw two dice and find the product. How many shapes can you draw on the grid which have that area or perimeter?
Basic strategy games are particularly suitable as starting points
for investigations. Players instinctively try to discover a winning
strategy, and usually the best way to do this is to analyse. . . .
Try this matching game which will help you recognise different ways of saying the same time interval.
A game for 2 or more players with a pack of cards. Practise your
skills of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to hit
the target score.
A game for 2 people using a pack of cards Turn over 2 cards and try
to make an odd number or a multiple of 3.
Throw the dice and decide whether to double or halve the number. Will you be the first to reach the target?
Strike it Out game for an adult and child. Can you stop your partner from being able to go?
A shunting puzzle for 1 person. Swop the positions of the counters at the top and bottom of the board.
Hover your mouse over the counters to see which ones will be
removed. Click to remover them. The winner is the last one to
remove a counter. How you can make sure you win?
This is an adding game for two players.
Can you use the numbers on the dice to reach your end of the number line before your partner beats you?
Who said that adding couldn't be fun?
Use your addition and subtraction skills, combined with some strategic thinking, to beat your partner at this game.
A card pairing game involving knowledge of simple ratio.
Unmultiply is a game of quick estimation. You need to find two numbers that multiply together to something close to the given target - fast! 10 levels with a high scores table.
There are nasty versions of this dice game but we'll start with the nice ones...
A game that tests your understanding of remainders.
A complicated game played on a 9 x 9 checkered grid.
Here is a version of the game 'Happy Families' for you to make and
A fun puzzle with tantrix tiles.
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
Take it in turns to make a triangle on the pegboard. Can you block your opponent?
This is a challenging game of strategy for two players with many interesting variations.
Here are a collection of games from around the world to try during the holidays or the last few weeks of term.
Work out the fractions to match the cards with the same amount of
You'll need two dice to play this game against a partner. Will Incey Wincey make it to the top of the drain pipe or the bottom of the drain pipe first?
Design your own scoring system and play Trumps with these Olympic Sport cards.
This is a game for 2 players. Each player has 4 counters each, and
wins by blocking their opponent's counters. A good follow-on from
Take it in turns to place a domino on the grid. One to be placed horizontally and the other vertically. Can you make it impossible for your opponent to play?
A game for 1 person to develop stategy and shape and space awareness. 12 counters are placed on a board. Counters are removed one at a time. The aim is to be left with only 1 counter.