Here are the items you need to begin for a two player game:
- 1 dice
- 10 sticks of 10 blocks. (I have two of the sticks broken apart into “ones” while the other 8 sticks are “tens.”)
Players take turns rolling the dice and taking that number of blocks from their “ones” pile. Since there are only ten “ones,” players must trade in ten “ones” to receive a ten stick. The first player to have five “tens” sticks (that is 50 blocks) wins.
So, for example, player one rolls six. He takes six blocks.
On his next turn, he rolls a five. He takes four ones – that equals ten. So he trades in all ten “ones” for a ten stick of his color choice. But he still needs one more block.
He now has one ten and one one, totaling eleven.
In playing this game, kids learn about tens and ones, simple addition and they learn to relate facts such as 5 + 6 = 5 + 5 + 1 = 10 + 1. This hands on approach to math teaches place value and mental addition that will aid in calculating higher numbers.
They can see that 9 + 2 = 11 and 19 + 2 = 21 and relate those facts mentally, in a fun way. My children love to play this game and I have found they are learning math facts and concepts way faster than through quizzes, flashcards or worksheets.
The game can be modified to more players, especially if there are more blocks than 100. Also, the game could go to a more challenging level with more dice involved. However, we are enjoying our simple version for now.