Math Game Monday: Hide-and-Seek Zoo

“Hide-and-Seek Zoo” is free on this website for one week only. It’s an excerpt from 70+ Things To Do with a Hundred Chart, available as an ebook at my bookstore (Thank you for cutting out the middleman!) and in ebook or paperback through many online retailers. Read more about my playful math books here.

Many parents remember struggling to learn math. We hope to provide a better experience for our children.

And one of the best ways for children to enjoy learning is through hands-on play.

This game builds familiarity with the patterns in 2-digit numbers as players search for the secret squares on a hundred chart.

Hide-and-Seek Zoo

Math Concepts: hundred chart, strategy.

Players: two players.

Equipment: printed gameboard, pencils or felt-tip markers.


The free 50-page PDF Hundred Charts Galore! file features printable 1–100 charts, 0–99 charts, bottom’s-up versions, multiple-chart pages, blank charts, and more. Including the Hide-and-Seek Zoo board for this game.

Hundred Charts Galore ❱

Print a copy of the gameboard for each player (or team). You will also need pencils or felt-tip markers. Or you may want to laminate the game boards and play with dry-erase markers.

Players must sit back-to-back or use something tall (like a science fair display board) to block their view of each other’s boards.

How to Play

One of the charts on your gameboard is for your own zoo. Color squares to represent your animals hiding in the foliage. Each animal is a certain number of squares in a horizontal row or vertical column — no diagonals.

  • Elephant: five squares
  • Giraffe: four squares
  • Lion: three squares
  • Alligator: three squares
  • Chimpanzee: two squares

Or make other rectangles and name them as the animals of your choice.

Play as in traditional Battleship, but instead of taking shots players name a chart square to “peek” at that position.

If the other player says a number where you’ve hidden an animal, answer “You see something” and mark an X over your animal on that square. If you want, you may get more specific: “There’s a tail,” or “You see an ear,” or “Watch out for those teeth!” But if there’s no animal in that square, reply “Nothing there.”

Keep track of where you’ve looked for the other player’s animals by marking off squares, and color in the places where you found something. You’ll want to keep searching around that area until you uncover the whole critter.

When the other player uncovers all the squares for one of your animals, say, “You found my [name the animal].”


Team Search: Play as above, except that players each get as many peeks per turn as they have animals still hiding.

You and your opponent identify all your squares together, before hearing the result. So you will probably want scratch paper to write down the numbers.

After all the squares are named, players tell the hits and misses to each other and report whether any animals were revealed.

Then the next round of searching begins.

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