Workshop Wednesday - Math Card Games

Ideas by Jivey is hosting her weekly Workshop Wednesday series.  This week everyone is supposed to link up with a math *card* game.

I bought this Scholastic book on math card games many years ago during one of their sales.  I believe I got it for only dollar!  It is a great resource when looking for a new idea.

One year I was able to find GIANT playing cards at the Dollar Tree.  My students always loved using those.  The game I am going to share is a version of War that focuses on place value.  I have used it in first and second to practice place value.

Students need a deck of cards, number cards only.  They can play against a partner or they can play alone.  If playing alone, students choose two cards (tens and ones) or three cards (tens, ones, and hundreds).  They form the largest 2 or 3 digit number they can with the chosen numbers and record it.  Then they repeat the process and add a greater than, less than, or equal sign in between the two numbers.

If playing with a partner, they follow the steps above, except they compete against their parter to make the largest number possible and the person who does so is the "winner" of the round.  They really get into thinking about how to rearrange the numbers so they can win.

The game could also be played by using 4 or 5 cards and increasing the size of the number made (you may need more than one deck).  Students could also compete to make the smallest number possible. 

The game is great practice for place value.   Here is a simple recording sheet I have used in the past.  The game is simple enough to just leave out a center for extra practice.


  1. Thanks for linking up this great game! Thanks for the freebie! :)
    ideas by jivey
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  2. What a great game to play at a center any time of the year! I tried to get the recording sheet but the link took me to Jivey's page. That resource for card games looks great too:)
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  3. That book looks great - those dollar deals are amazing. One year I bought the giant cards as Christmas presents for my students so they could play math games at home - they loved them. I should get some for my classroom - thanks for the reminder!

  4. How cute! I've never seen giant playing cards! I'm missing out!! Thanks for sharing this fun, easy game, and for the recording sheet!

    Collaboration Cuties

  5. What a great book! Thanks for sharing :)


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