I'm looking for fun games for children (from 4 to 12 years) used in learning math concepts. They can be offline or online games.
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Another great game is Rush hour. It requires the important but in my opinion underemphasized skills of nonverbal problem solving, working backwards and trying all possible options.
I think Set is a great commercial game. There's a daily instance of the game that can be played at the same website I just linked to.
I taught honors and enrichment math to students in 1st - 6th grades and we explored a lot of games.
My students in 4th to 6th grades have access to chrome books and can go to sites that are bookmarked to play. Here are their favorites:
- Lemonade Stand at CoolMath4Kids. The kids run a lemonade stand. They buy inventory, set prices and try to make a profit. Daily weather reports add to the fun. Older kids used unit pricing to find the best buys for their supplies. There are more games at this site.
- Design a Party at Math Playground. You have to use area and perimeter to plan the layout of a party. There are more games at this site.
- The factor game and the product game These are two player games at illuminations from NCTM but the students can play against the computer. The factor game require an understanding of prime and composite numbers and the ability to find factors. The product game is a great thinking game for basic multiplication facts.
As for non-technology games: every Friday at lunch the students would come and play math games. Here is a list of some of the most popular:
- Zeus on the Loose - Practices addition (mental math) of one digit numbers and two digit numbers up to 100. It also uses rounding to 10, and recognizing multiples of 10. Weaker students can play with stronger students who help with the mental math. This was so popular I had to buy four of them! Enjoyed by gifted 1st and 2nd graders and 3rd-6th graders. You can buy it at Amazon.
- Presto Change-O - Practices recognizing money, making change, counting money. Money amounts include nickels, dimes, quarters, ones and fives. The object is to get $10. Very popular among 3rd and 4th graders though it can be played with older and younger children.
- Dino Math Tracks Game Teaches place value and very popular with 2nd graders, although good for 1st-3rd.
- Bazaar Students trade stones and learn algebraic concepts - good for students as young as 1st grade.
- Midnight Party - Uses addition of negative numbers An all time favorite but it is no longer being made. If you can find them on e-bay, I highly recommend it.
- 99 - very similar to Zeus on the Loose but the rules are less complicated. Uses addition of one digit and two digit numbers and subtraction. Excellent game for 1st and up.
- Parts of a Whole This was used in class only. Students play war and in the process order fractions, decimals, percents, and parts of a whole in pictures. Much more popular than worksheets! This is made by Legani Games.
- Swish This is a visual spatial game made by Think Fun. It is enjoyed by my 6th graders. Younger children find it very challenging. Think Fun has many puzzles that my students enjoy and digital links to some of their puzzles.
The NCTM website has many mathematical games: http://illuminations.nctm.org/. The site lists over 20 games in the "pre-K-2" grade category, though some of them are a bit advanced.
For offline games, if you spend a little time searching, you can find some really good ideas on Pinterest. Here are a few boards which are worth checking out:
This is a very large age range to be covering. I'm assuming children will be playing in groups that have a more limited ages range (so 4,5,6 year old children together or something of that nature).
Depending on the attention span of the children, something like math bingo can help them remember multiplication facts (or addition facts for the younger kids). Classic games like Quizmo have a readily available set of clue cards. I think that brand only exists in multiplication/division and decimals/place value, but you could certainly make up your own cards to fit the range of numbers you need.
Dice games are also a lot of fun and can teach a range of skills depending on the age of the participants. Something like Yahtzee and variants can be used for counting and pairing for the younger kids and skills such as combinations and permutations for the older set (the 10-12 year olds).
So, one particular game for 4-12 year olds might be difficult to find, but you can certainly vary some old favorites by creating new wrinkles in the rules of the game.
Depending on the kind of education you want to give, "Normal video games" can work.
By normal, i mean usual video games, in opposition to educationnal video games.
You can play a RPG game with your child if you want to learn him how to read. A game that has a money and shops for basic maths.
Just make sure it isn't violent.
For non-video games, Yahtzee (a dice game) needs some calculations in it.
Most of the games that exist in the world will teach things to your child, as long as you're with him to help him and praise him when he wins.