These are the two most popular questions that I hear from customers of iplaymathgames.com.
To answer the first question, it’s IPMG’s book called "Math in the Cards". This is a 220 page book packed with card games for a wide age range from Kindergarten to High School. The best way to describe the book itself and answer the second question is with the introduction from the book itself:
Motivation, enjoyment and mastery are the main reasons for playing card games and solving puzzles. For the most part, card games and puzzles do not explicitly teach skills. However, playing, solving and creating games and puzzles can be a useful tool for diagnosis and practice. Card games provide students with an opportunity to utilize and solidify skills they have acquired. The games also provide occasions to teach skills prior to playing so that students can play well. This can reduce the number of questions such as, “When am I ever going to use this?”
Card puzzles can be used in many ways. They can be a useful supplement to regular textbook assignments. They can also be edited so that they are a part of a warm up exercise program to start a class or introduce a topic. Many teachers use the card puzzles as a part of a puzzle of the week program. The puzzles can be posted on the bulletin board or somewhere in the room for students to examine and do during some short period of time during the day or at home. The puzzles can also be done in groups or assigned as non-traditional math homework. In general, most teachers find that puzzles of the week need to be more challenging than puzzles selected as warm up exercises. Many teachers indicate that they find that posting a puzzle on Monday and then discussing solutions on Friday is an effective format. Some teachers also provide a small reward for the “most insightful or creative” solution. Others prefer to have students who correctly solve a puzzle place their name in a box and then draw for a prize.
The first section of the book provides a collection of card games. The games are group alphabetically by topic, but they are not organized sequentially.
Pages 1-63 provide whole number concepts and operations games. Some of the games, such as Card Suit Race, Do Drop In, Horse Shoe Race, Match Up and Sole Survivor provide practice with color, symbol and number recognition, counting and matching numerals. Place value, comparing and decision-making are emphasized in Trading Places and Your Number Is Up. Games, such as Let’s Predict, Make My Day Addition and Subtraction, provide practice with basic facts. Others are addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of whole numbers games that also provide strategy formation. Close Call, Come Closer and In The Gap provide practice with estimation and mental arithmetic.
Pages 64-80 deal with basic ideas from geometry and measurement. Build a Polygon provides practice identifying polygons and finding perimeter. Let It Slide, Let’s Convert, Let’s Estimate, Metric Ant Paths and One Meter Card Dash provide experiences in metric length. The remaining games in this section are Last Place, Creating Line Symmetry and Point Symmetry Rummy. They offer concept development and practice with area and symmetry.
Pages 81-100 provide probability and statistics games. Aces Count and Choosing the Best Average are games to provide practice finding the mean, median and mode. Many statistics experts identify six steps in data analysis. They are: 1. Ask the question. 2. Collect the data. 3. Organize and display the data. 4. Summarize the data. 5. Interpret the data. 6. Make the decision. The remaining games in this collection are designed to provide students with practical examples of this process. In addition, the games Compare and Pair, Eleven’s, Getting Even, Lucky Number and Matched Pair are designed to spark a discussion of gambling as a social issue.
Pages 101-109 consider pre-algebra games. Battle It Out, Build and Take and Integers In Between, are integer games involving comparing and addition. Find the Joker is a coordinate graphing game. Power Play and Power Struggle are working with exponents games that also involve calculator use.
Pages 110-120 move through a set of logical thinking skills games. Some of the games in this set such as Bag It, Card Pick Up Games, Give Me a Clue, I’ll Give You Some Chances, Street Hustler and Two Aces and a Deuce are deductive reasoning experiences. Yes, No, You Got It! exposes players to the notion of a binary search strategy.
Pages 121-132 provide fractions, decimals and percent games. Box Shot, Do You Read Me?, Decimals in Between and Make a Buck are decimal games. They provide practice with place value, reading decimals and addition. Fractions in Between and Two or Twenty-Two are fraction games that examine comparing and beginning addition. Relay The Message is a game that provides practice finding a percent of a number and highlights women working in a non-traditional area.
Pages 133-138 provide two interdisciplinary games. Tour the Planets is a math and science game where the players must name the planets to earn their score. Tour the USA is a math and social studies game where players must name the states and capitols to earn their score.
The second section of the book provides a collection of logical thinking activities. The first part of this section provides a set of reproducible puzzles. Some of the puzzles, such as Cards, Triangles and Patterns, Consecutive Numbers Card Puzzles and Border Patrol Card Puzzles, provide practice with problem solving strategies such as finding patterns, systematic trial and error, or working backwards. Others, such as Fancy Footwork Featuring Fours provide an opportunity for creative practice with basic facts and order of operations. The second part of this section provides a set of mathematical card tricks.
In addition to providing many games, puzzles and tricks, this book has another emphasis-creation of new puzzles and games.
Throughout the book there are suggested game variations and challenges to create new games and puzzles.
At the back of the book are teaching suggestions and selected answers.
If you would like to purchase a copy of the book to be delivered to you, or download a copy for your immediate use, please do so by clicking here.