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 outcomes of series of 'moves'. With a little encouragement from the teacher, a mathematical investigation is born.
An animation that helps you understand the game of Nim.
Here are some more upper primary strategy games for you to play.
Advent Calendar 2010 - a mathematical game for every day during the run-up to Christmas.
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 winning.
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.
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.
An ancient game for two from Egypt. You'll need twelve distinctive 'stones' each to play. You could chalk out the board on the ground - do ask permission first.
Match the halves.
Can you make the birds from the egg tangram?
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.
Stop the Clock game for an adult and child. How can you make sure you always win this game?
This game is known as Pong hau k'i in China and Ou-moul-ko-no in Korea. Find a friend to play or try the interactive version online.