Gillian Hatch analyses what goes on when mathematical games are
used as a pedagogic device.
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.
This article, the second in the series, looks at some different types of games and the sort of mathematical thinking they can develop.
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.
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. . . .
Advent Calendar 2010 - a mathematical game for every day during the
run-up to Christmas.
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.
A fun game for two. You'll need some counters.
A game for 2 people. Take turns to move the counters 1, 2 or 3
spaces. The player to remove the last counter off the board wins.
A Sudoku that uses transformations as supporting clues.
The computer starts with all the lights off, but then clicks 3, 4
or 5 times at random, leaving some lights on. Can you switch them
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
This second Sudoku article discusses "Corresponding Sudokus" which are pairs of Sudokus with terms that can be matched using a substitution rule.
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
Can you identify the mathematicians?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
Given the products of diagonally opposite cells - can you complete this Sudoku?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios or fractions.
The game uses a 3x3 square board. 2 players take turns to play,
either placing a red on an empty square, or changing a red to
orange, or orange to green. The player who forms 3 of 1 colour in a
line. . . .
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
Match the cards of the same value.
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
All you need for this game is a pack of cards. While you play the
game, think about strategies that will increase your chances of
A Sudoku with a twist.
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for
the price of one
Can you spot the similarities between this game and other games you
know? The aim is to choose 3 numbers that total 15.
A simple game of patience which often comes out. Can you explain
This article invites you to get familiar with a strategic game called "sprouts". The game is simple enough for younger children to understand, and has also provided experienced mathematicians with. . . .
A complicated game played on a 9 x 9 checkered grid.
A shunting puzzle for 1 person. Swop the positions of the counters at the top and bottom of the board.
An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.
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
An ordinary set of dominoes can be laid out as a 7 by 4 magic
rectangle in which all the spots in all the columns add to 24,
while those in the rows add to 42. Try it! Now try the magic
A game for 2 or more people, based on the traditional card game
Rummy. Players aim to make two `tricks', where each trick has to
consist of a picture of a shape, a name that describes that shape,
and. . . .
Players take it in turns to choose a dot on the grid. The winner is the first to have four dots that can be joined to form a square.
Work out the fractions to match the cards with the same amount of
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
A game to make and play based on the number line.
Practise your diamond mining skills and your x,y coordination in this homage to Pacman.
The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right
hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of
Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players
take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single
pile. The winner is the player to take the last counter.
This is a challenging game of strategy for two players with many interesting variations.
A train building game for 2 players.
A game for two or more players that uses a knowledge of measuring
tools. Spin the spinner and identify which jobs can be done with
the measuring tool shown.
A game that tests your understanding of remainders.