Nothing beats a classic game of checkers! Now kids can practice basic math facts as they play their favorite game. All of the regular rules of the game still apply; we're just adding an extra math twist! Read more to find out how to play.
Grab a checkers board, game pieces, and a Sharpie marker to set up your math checkers game. We wrote directly onto our game board, but we completely understand if you'd prefer to take a less "permanent" approach. Feel free to use removable labels or even a clear laminate sheet on top of the game board to write with a dry erase marker.
First, decide which math skill you'd like your students to practice when they play math checkers: addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division. Then write math facts on the game board squares that will be used for play, the dark ones. We chose multiplication facts for our example, below.
Once you've written math facts on all the dark squares, you can set up your game pieces like you would for an ordinary checkers game.
In this math checkers challenge, students will adhere to the rules of the game, except for one difference: if a player wants to move their game piece to a space, he or she must say correctly the math fact that is in the space in order to make the move. For example, if Player 1 wants to move diagonally to the space that says 8 X 9, Player 1 must say aloud: "8 X 9 = 72" before moving there. If Player 1 answers incorrectly, then he or she loses the turn and Player 2 continues.
As the game progresses and the players begin jumping game pieces, they will need to say correctly all the math facts in the spaces affected by their move. For example, if Player 1 wants to jump Player 2's game piece, he or she will need to say correctly the math fact in Player 2's space and the space he or she is jumping to in order to complete the turn. If either math fact is answered incorrectly, Player 1 loses the turn.
The way to win the game remains the same: block all of your opponent's moves or capture all your opponent's game pieces.
We want to know what you think of this math checkers challenge! Would you try it with your students? Are there other classic board games that you like to use to practice basic math skills in your classroom? We'd love to hear from you, so leave us your feedback in the comment section below!
If you're looking for more math activities to use in your classroom, check out the complete collection of Super Teacher Worksheets math resources!You may also like: