There are lots of games specifically tailored to teach math. Students know they are practicing necessary skills the moment they decide to play them. There are other games which bolster math skills that are played for the sheer thrill of the game. Games like Yahtzee, cribbage, cards and Scrabble seem innocent enough, but they help build a strong foundation for math aptitude. Many variables come into play, drawing on calculation and problem solving skills.
Yahtzee challenges kids of all ages, including those in grades 7 – 12. Sequencing and pre-algebraic skills are required during play. Probability is strongly emphasized in Yahtzee as players strive for that glorious five of a kind roll. It gets even better when they debate which category to scratch off toward the end of the game. They think and wager based on previous rolls, fully utilizing probability skills.
Cribbage uses cards and a peg board that strengthen basic algebra skills. Each player has a hand of six cards. They keep four of their cards and put two in the crib; players then alternate getting the crib during play. These variables contribute to personal strategies exercised during game play. Mental math is strongly emphasized in cribbage when players alternately lay their cards down and move their peg on the scoreboard.
There are so many card games to play. Gin, Poker, Hearts and Spades help teenagers reinforce math facts, calculate percentages, estimate probability, and determine variables during play. Bridge and Solitaire require strict mathematical strategies for success. Games like War, Seven-up and Go Fish might seem simple enough to play, but they are constantly testing basic math skills.
Touted as a word game, Scrabble is an excellent game for math. You only get seven letters to come up with the highest score in each round. Each letter is worth a certain amount of points. You can plan ahead to increase a base score, by putting letters and words on double or triple score squares. As the game progresses and more of the board gets used up, you must calculate the variables to continue getting a high score and win.
A number of websites have links to math games and resources for teens. Many of these can be played or used directly online. Some even have lesson plans, tutoring services and references to experts in specific fields like algebra, geometry and calculus. Playing math games as a teenager is a great way to have fun and improve your math skills, especially when you win and realize just how smart you really are.
~Available Online Math Resources for Teenagers
*Math and Reading Help: Kids Math Games
*Learn-with-math-games: Math Card Games
*Homework Spot: High School Math
*BBC School Ages Math 11 – 16
*Awesome Library: Middle to High School Math
*Education.com: High School Math Activities