12 Apr Fun Ways To Teach Kids Mathematics
Who says that math has to be repetitive and boring? With some modifications, some of the simplest games can be made to help our children improve their confidence with numbers. Whether you choose to use these games as a warmup to a topic or as the wind down, games can be an effective medium to capture interest and help your children to gain competency.
In this article, we will be listing down the top simple math games that can be easily modified for any topic and work in any environment. You will not be requiring any special spaces or resources in order to facilitate them. For the purposes of the article, we will be covering the games from the standpoint of a tuition group, but modifications can be made if you only intend play it with your child.
Pass The Ball
Pass the ball is a general game that can be used to facilitate the learning of any math topic or in fact any subject. What we use is a soft object that can be easily passed between our students. Follow these steps to play the game:
- Create a list of questions related to a topic. These can be complied either from textbooks or from the internet
- Secondly, have all students stand in a circle while handing one student the ball
- The chosen student answers a randomly chosen question, if answered correctly, he or she can choose who to pass the ball to next and have them answer a chosen question
- Should the answer be incorrect, the ball gets passed on randomly
This game is really simple and has a high amount of versatility yet also helps to retain students’ attention.
If your group is feeling restless, then bouncing sums is an effective game to help them release some of their pent-up energy while also pouring it into math questions. Follow these steps to play the game:
- Use a marker to put integers, decimals or fractions on a rubber ball
- Now have one student pick up the ball and read aloud the number which his or her hand is touch
- Allow the first student to pass the ball to a classmate
- The second student has to add or multiply or divide the first number with a second number that he or she touches
- The challenge continues until a pre-set time limit is reached
- The goal here is to get the highest score possible within the time allocated
While “bouncing sums” bears some resemblance to “pass the ball”, there is greater spontaneity and randomness that hypes children up.
Math Team Race
Do you have a group of competitive children? If so “math team race” is a game designed to harness their competitive spirit. These are the steps:
- Prepare questions that include multiple sections within them; each section should be interdependent on each other
- Divide into 2 or more teams and have them stationed a distance away from your whiteboard
- 1 member from each team is allowed to race to the whiteboard to answer 1 section of a question at a time
- In order for the next person to answer, the current member has to return to the team and tag in the next person
- Only 1 section can be answered at a time
- In order to undo and correct a section, the team would have to sacrifice 1 turn
- The first team to correctly answer all sections correctly and get the final answer wins
Math team race is useful for changing up the pace of a class and helps to energise students.
Math bingo puts an interesting spin on the traditional game of Bingo by adding in the challenge of requiring students to quickly make calculations on the spot. An example of the game based on multiplication tables is as follows:
- Create bingo cards that contain answers to different multiplication tables
- Hand the cards out to the students
- Differing from traditional bingo, do not call out individual numbers, instead call out equations e.g. 4X3.
- After determining that the product of 4 and 3 is 12, students can then check 12 off their card
- The first student to complete a row wins
Math Bingo is another great game for capture student attention and getting them filled with anticipation for a math topic.
“Fastest Trigger” is game involving internal competition. It also puts an interesting twist on math formulas and problem solving. It is played as follows:
- Determine a formula to base the game on. For simplicity, you may choose a X + Y = Z formula, which we will be using in this example.
- Have two students standing in front of a whiteboard but facing away from each other
- Request both of them to write a number down, these numbers are X & Y in the equation
- You would then request a third student to find Z before announcing the value of Z
- A race then commences between the two students at the white board to figure out the other person’s number
- The faster student wins
This game tests students ability to quickly rearrange a formula in their head or on paper in order to find an unknown variable belonging to their competitor. Any formula can be used, thus giving you more flexibility when applying it to different concepts.
Trust MLGS to Help Your Child with Mathematics
Maths Learning Groups was established by Mr. Lawrence Ong, who is NIE-Trained and an ex Primary School Teacher with more than 15 years of teaching experience. We aim to help weaker students to bridge the gap with better-performing students by catering to their learning pace and style in our maths tuition classes.
We strive to provide affordable tuition rates so that no student will be deprived of the opportunity to learn from NIE-Trained teachers. We specialize in offering math tuition classes for students in Primary 3 to Primary 6. Our primary School Maths Tuition classes help to build up a strong solid foundation in the key mathematics concepts.
Our small group maths tuition and private tuition classes in Singapore help students maximize their learning potential. This ensures that they hone strong critical thinking skills that will carry them through in their education journey.