Gillian Hatch analyses what goes on when mathematical games are
used as a pedagogic device.
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.
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.
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. . . .
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
Square It game for an adult and child. Can you come up with a way of always winning this game?
A game for 2 people. Take turns joining two dots, until your opponent is unable to move.
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.
Given the products of diagonally opposite cells - can you complete this Sudoku?
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
A Sudoku with clues as ratios or fractions.
This second Sudoku article discusses "Corresponding Sudokus" which are pairs of Sudokus with terms that can be matched using a substitution rule.
A game for 2 players. Can be played online. One player has 1 red
counter, the other has 4 blue. The red counter needs to reach the
other side, and the blue needs to trap the red.
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 article for teachers describes several games, found on the
site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to
develop the skills of strategic planning.
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
A Sudoku with a twist.
A game for 2 players that can be played online. Players take it in turns to select a word from the 9 words given. The aim is to select all the occurrences of the same letter.
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
Slide the pieces to move Khun Phaen past all the guards into the position on the right from which he can escape to freedom.
A Sudoku that uses transformations as supporting clues.
Advent Calendar 2010 - a mathematical game for every day during the
run-up to Christmas.
Solve this Sudoku puzzle whose clues are in the form of sums of the
numbers which should appear in diagonal opposite cells.
Can you identify the mathematicians?
A game that tests your understanding of remainders.
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
Design your own scoring system and play Trumps with these Olympic Sport cards.
Can you work out how to win this game of Nim? Does it matter if you go first or second?
This sudoku requires you to have "double vision" - two Sudoku's for
the price of one
A fun game for two. You'll need some counters.
Nim-7 game for an adult and child. Who will be the one to take the last counter?
A Sudoku with clues given as sums of entries.
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 game to make and play based on the number line.
Board Block game for two. Can you stop your partner from being able to make a shape on the board?
Train game for an adult and child. Who will be the first to make the train?
Factors and Multiples game for an adult and child. How can you make sure you win this game?
Practise your diamond mining skills and your x,y coordination in this homage to Pacman.
Work out the fractions to match the cards with the same amount of
Some Games That May Be Nice or Nasty for an adult and child. Use your knowledge of place value to beat your oponent.
Four Go game for an adult and child. Will you be the first to have four numbers in a row on the number line?
Board Block Challenge game for an adult and child. Can you prevent your partner from being able to make a shape?
A simple game of patience which often comes out. Can you explain
An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.