Now that your second grader has beginning addition under his belt, it's a good time to try comparing and ordering numbers. Inject a little fun into the process by playing a quick number game that's all about building number sentences.
What's a number sentence? Your kid should already be familiar with one type of number sentence: the equation. For example: 4 + 2 = 6. This game is based on inequalities, like 9 > 4 or 3 < 7. Use the alligator trick if he needs a little help: pretend the symbols are alligator mouths, and remind him that the alligator always eats the bigger number!
What You Need:
- 30 number cards: 3 each of numbers 0 - 9
- 10 symbol cards: 3 greater than symbols (>), 3 less than symbols (<), and 4 equal signs (=)
- 2 players
What You Do:
- Before beginning the game, decide if you're going to play with one-, two-, or three-digit numbers. Shuffle the number and symbol cards together and deal 10 cards to each player face down. Place extra cards in a pile face down in the middle of the table.
- Have each player turn over his cards at the same time and begin making number sentences.
- When each player has made as many number sentences as he can from his 10 cards, it’s time to declare if each sentence is true or false.
- Have each player read his sentences aloud. After each sentence, another player calls out "true" if he thinks the sentence is correct, or "false" if he thinks it isn't.
- When the players have finished reading their senteces, have them save their correct sentences, and mix up their incorrect sentences to use in the next round.
- Have the players draw enough cards from the pile to bring their hand back up to 10.
- Now start the next round. Rounds continue until there are no more cards left in the pile. The player with the most “true” sentences wins!
Sally is an experienced educator, with over 14 years of teaching experience. In addition to teaching, she has also created educational materials, including ancillary, textbook, and test items, for Grades K-8 for major educational publishers.