Players Two or three
Take an amount of large beans, or small items to hold in your hands. Decide on a number to work on like 8. Have your player count out 8 beans. Place the beans in your hand and hide them behind your back.
While they’re behind your back put some beans in each hand. Like 3 in one hand and 5 in the other. Show the player the beans in one hand. They must tell you how many you have in the other hand. Play this again using another combination. This helps your child learn all the combinations of a number sum.
Required Paper Plates and dried beans
Players Small groups
To help children learn multiplication here is a great idea for them to visually see the concept. Use small paper plates for the small number and place beans on them for the multiplier. Example 3 plates and 5 beans on each plate is 3 X 5 = 15. You can also use three plates for the addition and subtraction problems. Plate one will have 3 beans, plate two will have 5 beans and plate three will be what 3 + 5 equals 8 beans.
Required Deck of cards, paper and pencil
If you need a fun way to learn multiplications with your child try this game. Both of you should have a pencil and sheet of paper. Make five lines in a column on one corner of both papers and then a small line below the far right of the column for a total sum amount. Start out with a deck of cards and use only the 1’s through 5’s. Shuffle the cards and deal two faced up the other player. They are to write down the two numbers, multiply them and write the answer in a tally column. You then deal two cards to yourself, say the multiplied sum out loud and write the answer on your paper. Then repeat until all the cards are gone. At that point you should both have five sets of cards. Tally up the to answers on both sheets, the person with the highest number is the winner. You can play again until you have mastered 1-5’s. Do this a couple times of week for a few minutes a day. Once they can do 1-5’s you can replace the lower numbers with the next higher set of cards 2-6’s, 3-7’s or make the columns longer example 2-7’s.
Required Small Ziploc storage bag, styling gel (Dippetty Doo) and food coloring
Measure out about 4 tablespoons of styling gel into a Ziploc bag and add several drops of food coloring. Close bag while removing any air in bag and then have kids mix food coloring around in gel until all one color. Once mixed have the kids lay the bags on a flat surface and now they can practice writing their letters or numbers. A great activity to help improve fine motor skills. Keep track of where they take their bags and advise them not to open them so they don’t make a mess.
Exchange Change Game
Required Pennies, nickels, dimes and one die
Players Two or three
A learning game that will help preschoolers to early grade schoolers learn money combinations. To play this game with 2-3 players, start out with 10 dimes, 6 nickels, and 15 pennies. The first player will roll the die and what ever number comes up from 1-6 they will take that many coins. If they roll a six they can take six pennies, but then they have to exchange 5 pennies for a nickel. After a few times of having to exchange them they’ll learn to pick a nickel and one penny. The next player will do the same and take the allotted amount. On the players next turn they take the allotted coins, but if they end up with five pennies they exchange them for a nickel and if they have two nickels they have to exchange them for one dime. When all the dimes are gone the game is over and all players count out their change. The person with the highest number wins. For the next level of learning money combinations add 10 quarters and then the next level you can add dollar bills.
Shaving Cream Writing
Required Foil or wax paper and can of shaving cream
Lay out wax paper or tin foil on a work counter or kitchen table so that it’s nice and flat. Let the kids spray a large pile of shaving cream onto the area. Have them spread out the cream and practice their writing skills. This activity will be very helpful with fine motor skills, those visual and tactical learners will benefit from this. The more senses you use, the more you learn. Do this activity to practice letters, writing words, writing cursive, writing numbers and doing addition. Make learning fun!!!
Required Game of Yahtzee
Players Two to four
Great game to purchase that you should add to your game cupboard. This game is great for those grade schoolers in learning to do simple addition and multiplication problems. Some kids need different ways to help them better retain what they are learning. Repeating multiplication over and over is hard for some. If you can help them apply the concept in different ways, they have a great chance of retaining what they have learned. The game of Yahtzee has players adding and multiplying numbers from 1-6 by as high as 5 if your lucky. It’s a great start to help children understand the concept of simple addition and multiplication.
Remember – The object is for everyone to have fun. The moderator is the all-powerful dictator. You may at any time change the rules or boundaries or handicap players to help balance out the wide spectrum of abilities. We want the tentative athlete and the superjock to play together at the best of their abilities.
Have Fun! 🙂
Now here are some colorful ideas to liven up play time.
If you have a fun game that is entertaining and healthy for kids of ANY age, you can send it to us for consideration and addition to our Games and Activities Guide.
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