Articles for parents

# Maths games for the Easter weekend

Apr 2022

We believe a little time dedicated to learning every day is the best way to build new knowledge. Consolidating that learning through practice ensures the new information is retained and easily at hand when we need to recall or engage a skill, but so is enjoying our learning too if we're going to keep up our practice even during holiday periods. Finding a way to combine a little maths into the Easter weekend's festivities, maybe with Easter treats too simply couldn't be a better combination!

Why not take some time out this long weekend to play some maths games with your children and have some fun whilst learning? Here are a few suggestions:

Guess my number
Do you know the numerical version of "I spy with my little eye", in "Guess my number" one player thinks of a number and the other player or players have to guess which one it is by asking mathematical questions such as: "Is it greater than...?",  "Is it an odd number?", "If I multiply it by X is the answer X?",  "Is it a decimal number?" or "Can it be divided by X?".
The questions can be as simple or as complicated as you like to suit your audience. You could have rounds where the answers need to be less than 50, between 50 and 100, numbers up to 500 so as not to intimidate anyone and should perhaps get progressively harder as you go on.

Shopping games
Children love to imitate adults; pretending they are shoppers or a shopkeeper selling things to their customers is popular with younger children and a great way to bring maths into the real world. This is a great way for them to practise their maths when paying or giving change for purchased goods. If you are feeling especially creative, you could even make price labels for household items and buy and sell things in your house, and even make paper money to exchange, allowing them to count out the change to verify their maths.

For older children, calculating 20% VAT or the appropriate 12.5% service charge on the fake bill, when younger ones are playing 'restaurants', is a good way to involve everyone.

Monopoly
Monopoly requires an advanced level of maths and enforces strategic thinking skills. Considering the different tactics to make the most from their money will help children improve their maths and critical thinking abilities, whilst having fun!

How much money do I have?
A simple game just requiring some loose change, ask your children to guess how much money you have in your pocket by posing questions such as: "I have three coins in my pocket, they add up to 70p, which coins could I have?" or "I have coins in my pocket which add up to £1.50. How many coins could I have?" Get your children to shout out the right answers or all the possible right answers, until they guess correctly. If you are doing this with small change, perhaps your child could keep the small change as a reward.

Many Easter activities are also a time for a little everyday maths practice; whether that family time spent measuring ingredients for baking Easter biscuits or counting eggs on your Easter egg hunt and then calculating who's eaten the most of their haul! Whatever you're planning for the long weekend, there are always opportunities to have a little fun with maths.