Playful Math on Kickstarter

Have you noticed that we live in a wonderful era of mathematical innovation? Not only at the “it’s all over my head” level — which is growing faster than anyone can keep up with — but also at the Cool Math For Kids level.

For instance, our children can enjoy Patterns of the Universe, and Prime Climb, and This is Not a Maths Book, and Which One Doesn’t Belong?, and Tiny Polka Dot, and Math & Magic in Wonderland, and Spiraling Pentagons, and …

So many things! I’m sure I forgot one (or several) of your favorite modern-classic math books or toys. I’d love to hear about them in the comments.

And here are a few bits of new playful math. Click, support, and share!

Math Renaissance

In alternating chapters, Rodi Steinig tells stories about her math circle and exactly what happens there, while her daughter Rachel discusses why so many kids hate math, documents the ways math is taught in the classroom — and ways that can be improved.

I first discovered Rodi’s work through her chapter in Sue VanHattum’s wonderful collection Playing with Math: Stories from Math Circles, Homeschoolers, and Passionate Teachers. I’ve been a fan of Rodi’s math circle blog for years, and I can’t wait to get my hands on her new book.

Funville Adventures

When 9-year-old Emmy and her 5-year-old brother Leo go down an abandoned dilapidated slide, they are magically transported into Funville — a land inhabited by ordinary-looking beings, each with a unique power to transform objects.

I had the fun of previewing this book. It’s a cute little fairy tale that should help launch family conversations about math.

Trouble with Monkeys

A boy wants to surprise his dad, but meddlesome monkeys keep getting in the way. The boy is interviewed by the local news, and the story escalates to involve pirates, ballerinas, ninjas — and the magic of our place value number system.

Lucy Ravitch, math blogger and author of The Pancake Menu, teams up with artist Travis Hanson (one of my favorite comic bloggers) to create a story that will build number sense.

This story reminds me of the Cookie Factory Model for long division. Place Value is a key to understanding many things in math.

GregTangMath Home Kit

I haven’t seen these games in person, but they sure look like fun.

And Others?

If you know a project we should all check out, please share in the Comments section below.

7 thoughts on “Playful Math on Kickstarter

  1. So cool! I’m thrilled to see so many great math resources coming into the world. Thanks for your post! It’s neat that Greg Tang is running his Kickstarter alongside mine : )

    1. Beautiful video, Lucy, and beautiful book project. I’ll spread the word when it goes live.

      Thank you for the write-up, Denise. Your continuing support of math adventures means a lot – and makes a big difference!

  2. Thank you so much for posting about this, Denise! Rachel and I are excited to see our work not only talked about but also showcased in the company of two other joyful math books. ~Rodi

  3. Hey, Denise! I just ran a successful Kickstarter for my math superhero book, Jim McClain’s Solution Squad. Created for grades 4-8 (I’m a 7th grade math teacher with 30 years of experience), the book is available in softcover on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. I also create teacher materials that go with each story that are available on Teachers Pay Teachers. For a free digital comic that can be projected in the classroom or viewed on a tablet, go to and use the download code, KICKSTARTER. You can read the first story, in which we meet the Squad as they solve a prime number code to escape a deathtrap set by the villainous Poser. I’ve been working on this project for just over 10 years now, and I’m still just getting warmed up. I even have a Solution Squad YouTube channel!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.