Hi, I was subbing in a class of grade 2 students the other day. They play a game called "knock down." First off the teacher picks a number such as 103. With the students in a circle have one student start with 3 and the next one has to mentally add 10 and say the new number, 13. The next in the circle mentally adds another 10 to get 23. The pattern goes on until one student has to say the chosen number (103) at which point they sit down. Another round begins with either 3 or a number ending in 3 until only one student is left standing. I thought this was a fun game and the kids really liked it. Does anyone have any other mental math VERBAL games they can share? I am trying to build up a cache of these for when I sub. Thanks Dave

Buzz- to review a specific fact family. It can be played in a small group or the entire class. The leader chooses a number between 2 and 9. The leader says 1, the next player says the 2, and so on. When they reach a multiple of the number chosen, the player says "buzz" instead of the number. If a player forgets to say buzz or says it at the wrong time, he or she is out. Play continues until they group reaches the last multiple of the number times 9.

You can also play "Buzz" with the lower grades - identify the numeral that is buzzed and so they can't say any number with that digit in it. So we stand in a circle and just start counting and for example if the buzzed number is 1 - when they get to 1 or 11-19, or 21, etc. they would say buzz instead of the number.

another popular game I have, who has. You can check out mathwire.com for rules and an example. Very simple game to practice various topics.

Cows & Bulls (probably for kids that are a little older) - the teacher thinks of a number that has 3 or 4 digits (example 102). The kids guess 3 digits (example 123). You then tell them how many cows they have and how many bulls. A cow is when they get one of the digits correct but it is not in the right spot. A bull is when they have the digit correct and in the right spot. So in the example above they would have 1 cow and 1 bull. Then they guess another 3 digit number and you repeat the process until the get the right number.

Hey Flying Teacher, This is probably obvious but on that knockdown game what happens if the student incorrectly says the next number in the pattern incorrectly? I assume he or she sits down? Thanks

I like "Bowling for Math." Kids are in two teams. I draw on the board 10 circles with numbers 1-10 in them. They are set up to look like "bowling pins." I roll 3 numbers with dice. Then, the team has to add, subtract, multiply, and divide the three numbers trying to "knock down the pins." Example: I roll 3,2,5. Kids can say 3 + 2 + 5= 10, so I then mark out bowling pin 10 3-2 +5=6, mark out bowling pin 6. If a team gets a strike, they get 70 points. If they do not, they count up how many pins they've knocked down and that's how many points they get. It's alot of fun.

Hi Lucky, You can do it that way to add a progression but if they are newer at this skill you could tell them to look at the number line in the class to check their answer. Sort of slows it down a bit but maybe takes the pressure off a bit. Dave