## Thinking Thursday: Number Pyramid

“Journaling Prompt #267 Number Pyramid” is an excerpt from Task Cards Book #6, available as a digital printable activity guide at my bookstore. Read more about my playful math books here.

Do you want your children to develop the ability to reason creatively and figure out things on their own?

Help kids practice slowing down and taking the time to fully comprehend a math topic or problem-solving situation with these classic tools of learning: See. Wonder. Create.

See: Look carefully at the details of the numbers, shapes, or patterns you see. What are their attributes? How do they relate to each other? Also notice the details of your own mathematical thinking. How do you respond to a tough problem? Which responses are most helpful? Where did you get confused, or what makes you feel discouraged?

Wonder: Ask the journalist’s questions: who, what, where, when, why, and how? Who might need to know about this topic? Where might we see it in the real world? When would things happen this way? What other way might they happen? Why? What if we changed the situation? How might we change it? What would happen then? How might we figure it out?

Create: Create a description, summary, or explanation of what you learned. Make your own related math puzzle, problem, art, poetry, story, game, etc. Or create something totally unrelated, whatever idea may have sparked in your mind.

Math journaling may seem to focus on this third tool, creation. But even with artistic design prompts, we need the first two tools because they lay a solid groundwork to support the child’s imagination.

## Math Game Monday: Twelve Cards

This game helps students visualize the meanings of multiplication and fractions.

“Twelve Cards” is free on this website for one week only. It’s an excerpt from Multiplication & Fractions: Math Games for Tough Topics, 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.

The Math Game Monday posts will be available for one week only. If you missed this one, explore the Topic Tag links in the sidebar. There are more than forty free games scattered around the blog. Have fun playing math with your kids!

## Thinking Thursday: Math Pietry

“Journaling Prompt #227 Math Pietry” is an excerpt from Task Cards Book #5, available as a digital printable activity guide at my bookstore. Read more about my playful math books here.

Do you want your children to develop the ability to reason creatively and figure out things on their own?

Help kids practice slowing down and taking the time to fully comprehend a math topic or problem-solving situation with these classic tools of learning: See. Wonder. Create.

See: Look carefully at the details of the numbers, shapes, or patterns you see. What are their attributes? How do they relate to each other? Also notice the details of your own mathematical thinking. How do you respond to a tough problem? Which responses are most helpful? Where did you get confused, or what makes you feel discouraged?

Wonder: Ask the journalist’s questions: who, what, where, when, why, and how? Who might need to know about this topic? Where might we see it in the real world? When would things happen this way? What other way might they happen? Why? What if we changed the situation? How might we change it? What would happen then? How might we figure it out?

Create: Create a description, summary, or explanation of what you learned. Make your own related math puzzle, problem, art, poetry, story, game, etc. Or create something totally unrelated, whatever idea may have sparked in your mind.

Math journaling may seem to focus on this third tool, creation. But even with artistic design prompts, we need the first two tools because they lay a solid groundwork to support the child’s imagination.

## Why I Love Math Games

To everyone who has supported my Tabletop Math Games Collection Kickstarter project: thank you ever so much! We’ve blown past our funding target and the first two Stretch Goals. And the Kickstarter folks awarded us the “Project We Love” tag. 😻

If you haven’t backed the project yet, check out what you’re missing:

Pledge now to get this bonus book:

### Why I Love Math Games

Math games build mental flexibility and strategic reasoning in players of all ages. And even people who hated math in school can enjoy the friendly challenge of a game.

I love how the challenge of a well-fought math game pushes players of all ages to think more creatively and build fluency.

### Games Promote Mathematical Thinking

Math games push students to develop a creatively logical approach to solving problems. In the stress-free struggle of a game, players learn to analyze situations and draw conclusions.

Even more importantly, games help children learn to enjoy the challenge of thinking hard. Their vocabulary grows as they discuss options and strategies with their fellow players. With their attention focused on their next move, they don’t notice how much they are learning.

And games are good medicine for math anxiety. Everyone knows it takes time to master the fine points of a game, so players can get stuck or make mistakes without losing face.

### What’s Special About These New Books?

Readers of my Math You Can Play series know the joy of gaming can transform a child’s attitude toward math. But many of you tell me the books get lost on your bookshelves or in your ebook reading device. You’ve begged me to make math gaming more open-and-go.

So my new Tabletop Math Games Collection is designed to make it easier than ever for busy families and over-stressed teachers to play with math.

These books are written directly for young gamers and require only common household supplies like cards, dice, and scratch paper. Children can open to any page and start playing right away.

Not to mention the swag! I’m excited about the items we’ve created to go along with the books. The “Gaming in the Enchanted Forest” coloring page by fantasy artist Tanya Hales is absolutely delightful, and the enamel pins are a fun and colorful way to share your playful math joy.

Whether you’re a busy parent or an overworked teacher, you’ll love the Tabletop Math Games Collection — the natural, no-stress way to build your children’s understanding and confidence.

These are NOT the typical memory-and-speed-based math games you’ve probably seen online, but true battles of wit and skill (plus a bit of luck). Even the preschool games can be fun for adults, too.

Most of the games take only seconds to learn and less than 15 minutes to play, making them perfect ice-breakers for family gatherings, classroom warmups, or for launching a group game night.

So what are you waiting for? Grab some cards, dice, or graph paper, and let’s play some math!

## Math Game Monday: Penterimeter

This game challenges students to visualize their strategy in two dimensions.

“Penterimeter” is free on this website for one week only. It’s an excerpt from Prealgebra & Geometry: Math Games for Middle School, 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.

The Math Game Monday posts will be available for one week only. If you missed this one, explore the Topic Tag links in the sidebar. There are more than forty free games scattered around the blog. Have fun playing math with your kids!

## Thinking Thursday: Painting Blocks 1

“Journaling Prompt #165 Painting Blocks 1” is an excerpt from Task Cards Book #4, available as a digital printable activity guide at my bookstore. Read more about my playful math books here.

Do you want your children to develop the ability to reason creatively and figure out things on their own?

Help kids practice slowing down and taking the time to fully comprehend a math topic or problem-solving situation with these classic tools of learning: See. Wonder. Create.

See: Look carefully at the details of the numbers, shapes, or patterns you see. What are their attributes? How do they relate to each other? Also notice the details of your own mathematical thinking. How do you respond to a tough problem? Which responses are most helpful? Where did you get confused, or what makes you feel discouraged?

Wonder: Ask the journalist’s questions: who, what, where, when, why, and how? Who might need to know about this topic? Where might we see it in the real world? When would things happen this way? What other way might they happen? Why? What if we changed the situation? How might we change it? What would happen then? How might we figure it out?

Create: Create a description, summary, or explanation of what you learned. Make your own related math puzzle, problem, art, poetry, story, game, etc. Or create something totally unrelated, whatever idea may have sparked in your mind.

Math journaling may seem to focus on this third tool, creation. But even with artistic design prompts, we need the first two tools because they lay a solid groundwork to support the child’s imagination.

## Playful Math Education 162: The Math Games Carnival

Welcome to the 162nd edition of the Playful Math Education Blog Carnival — a smorgasbord of delectable tidbits of mathy fun. It’s like a free online magazine devoted to learning, teaching, and playing around with math from preschool to high school.

Bookmark this post, so you can take your time browsing.

There’s so much playful math to enjoy!

By tradition, we start the carnival with a puzzle/activity in honor of our 162nd edition. But if you’d rather jump straight to our featured blog posts, click here to see the Table of Contents.

## Try This Puzzle/Activity

The number 162 is a palindromic product:

162 = 3 x 3 x 2 x 3 x 3
and 162 = 9 x 2 x 9

• How would you define palindromic products?
• What other numbers can you find that are palindromic products?
• What do you notice about palindromic products?
• What questions can you ask?

Make a conjecture about palindromic products. (A conjecture is a statement you think might be true.)

Make another conjecture. How many can you make? Can you think of a way to investigate whether your conjectures are true or false?

## Launch Day! Act Now To Get the Earlybird Bonus

And so it begins: Tabletop Math Games Collection is LIVE on Kickstarter!

To have a successful campaign, we need plenty of people to back the project early. The more supporters we get — especially on the first day — the more likely the Kickstarter service folks will help spread the news for us.

So I’m offering a special bonus printable activity guide for everyone who joins the campaign at any pledge level during the first 48 hours of the campaign:

Geometric Coloring Designs 5: Advanced Tessellations is one of my favorite open-ended math art activities, which works with students from elementary to high school. And adults enjoy it, too!

The rest of the Geometric Coloring Designs series will show up as bonuses in future weeks, and early backers get them all. Whether you pledge on day 1 or day 21, your credit card won’t be charged until the campaign ends, so join early to lock in your bonus perks.

Let’s show the whole world how much fun it can be to play around with math!

## Math Game Monday: Fifty Sticker Race

This game helps young players internalize the counting patterns in our base-ten number system.

“Fifty Sticker Race” is free on this website for one week only. It’s an excerpt from Counting & Number Bonds: Math Games for Early Learners, 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.

The Math Game Monday posts will be available for one week only. If you missed this one, explore the Topic Tag links in the sidebar. There are more than forty free games scattered around the blog. Have fun playing math with your kids!

## Thinking Thursday: Cliff Stoll

“Quotation from Cliff Stoll” is an excerpt from Reflections on Mathematics 1: 28 Quotation Cards, available as a digital printable activity guide at my bookstore. Read more about my playful math books here.

Do you want your children to develop the ability to reason creatively and figure out things on their own?

Help kids practice slowing down and taking the time to fully comprehend a math topic or problem-solving situation with these classic tools of learning: See. Wonder. Create.

See: Look carefully at the details of the numbers, shapes, or patterns you see. What are their attributes? How do they relate to each other? Also notice the details of your own mathematical thinking. How do you respond to a tough problem? Which responses are most helpful? Where did you get confused, or what makes you feel discouraged?

Wonder: Ask the journalist’s questions: who, what, where, when, why, and how? Who might need to know about this topic? Where might we see it in the real world? When would things happen this way? What other way might they happen? Why? What if we changed the situation? How might we change it? What would happen then? How might we figure it out?

Create: Create a description, summary, or explanation of what you learned. Make your own related math puzzle, problem, art, poetry, story, game, etc. Or create something totally unrelated, whatever idea may have sparked in your mind.

Math journaling may seem to focus on this third tool, creation. But even with artistic design prompts, we need the first two tools because they lay a solid groundwork to support the child’s imagination.