In my class, we love playing games to learn. A big skill is learning addition so it isn't a chore- with 'automoticity' as we teachers like to say. We want addition to be easy like 1+1. Which means lots of practice. I created this game to encourage practice while having fun.
The Math Scultpure Game goes beyond the game where children roll to cover all of the numbers. This time, use a material that can build: pattern blocks, little flat stones, Legos, whatever can make a tower. For this game, keep adding an item to a number with every roll of the dice. See which tower grows the tallest!
What fascinated me with the game were a few fun effects. One, children kept building even after covering their numbers. They wanted to keep growing the sculptures. We called them towns and we called them glaciers and we called them coral reefs. You can make the building match whatever thematic idea you like. This was an unending game (which I loved). And very cooperative.
Second, the children noticed a pattern. The buildings in the middle grew the tallest. 2 and 12 were usually the shortest. This led to early observations about probability and the many ways that you can make 5 with two dice vs. 12 (only 6+6). These mathematical and scientific deductions were fun to facilitate.
Finally, this was an engaging game for single or paired children. Originally, I had students take turns by passing the dice, rolling, and adding. Then they realized they could each roll a dice and add the results together. Turns every turn! Which is real invested learning- hurrah!
As a bonus, I created a board with 1-6 for my early learners who are still practicing number recognition. For this game, they used one dice and stacked to match the number of dots to the written number. This game was more straighforward and gave excellent practice for a necessary skill.
The game boards are free to download for personal and classroom use. Enjoy!
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