The all-time most-visited page on this site is my post about Math War: The Game That Is Worth 1,000 Worksheets. It’s easy to adapt to almost any math topic, simple to learn, and quick to play. My homeschool co-op students love it.
But Math War isn’t just for elementary kids. Several teachers have shared special card decks to help middle and high school students practice math by playing games.
Take a look at the links below for games from prealgebra to high school trig. And try the Math War Trumps variation at the end of the post to boost your children’s strategic-thinking potential.
Have fun playing math with your kids!
Playing with Prealgebra
- Chris’s My Closest Neighbor
(Fraction War with target numbers. Target cards are a Powerpoint file at the original post.)
- Sarah Carter’s War Activity for Practicing Absolute Value, Opposite, Reciprocal, and Opposite Reciprocal
Integer/Fraction War Cards
- Carla Dawson’s Fraction Talks War
How to Get the Fraction Talks War Cards
Fraction Talks Match-It Game
Comparing and Ordering Fraction Talk Cards
War Decks for Algebra & Geometry
War Decks for Algebra 2 & Trigonometry
Math War Trumps
The biggest problem with Math War is that it’s really just a worksheet in disguise. Children enjoy it more than a worksheet because of the social interaction, but there’s no choice or strategy to the game.
But you can bring strategic thinking into your number practice by playing Math War Trumps:
- Players draw three cards from their deck and look at them.
- The player whose turn it is calls the trump: High or Low, for which answer takes the trick. Or “closest to zero,” or any other winning value that makes sense with your card deck.
- Then all players choose a card to reveal, and the winner collects the other cards as prisoners.
- In case of a tie, the winners choose one of their remaining cards for a head-to-head competition (with the same trump).
Then all players draw enough cards to replenish their hand for the next turn.
Do you have a favorite way to play math with your kids? Please share in the comments below!
Would you like more ways to play math with your middle- and high-school students? Check out my new book of Prealgebra & Geometry Games.