Play a Place Value Game to Boost Your Child’s Math Skills

Place Value is an important element of the Grade 2 Math curriculum.  Students are expected to show the meaning of the digits in a two digit number by using counters as well as rods and units.  They should be able to count by grouping sets of objects into ‘tens’ and ‘ones’.  And they should be able to explain why the value of a digit depends on its placement within a numeral.  This all requires a strong number sense.

There are some simple games that you can play at home with your child to help support their understanding of place value.  All you need are some dice, two pencils and some paper and a pack of cards.

The Greatest and the Least Game:

1.  Roll one die and record the number in a square on a piece of paper.  Continue doing this until you have four squares each with a number from 1 – 6 written within them.  These will be the ‘cards’.

2.  Player 1 chooses two cards.  The object is to make the greatest number possible.  Player 1 will write down the chosen digits to create his/her number and keep them hidden until Player has done the same.

3.  Player 1 and 2 will reveal their number.  If a player is the only one to make the ‘greatest number’ possible he/she wins two points.  If both players get the correct answer, both players will earn 1 point.

4.  Player 1 and 2 will repeate step 2.  However, the object will now be to create the least number possible.  Both players will keep their answer hidden and then reveal them at the same time.  Again, if only one player gets the correct answer he/she will win 2 points.  If both players find the least number, they will both earn 1 point.

5.  Roll the die again and create 4 new cards.  Repeat steps 2-4 and so on.  The game can be played until a pre-set score is achieved or a certain number of rounds has been played….you decide!

*  To add an extra step to this game, each player can illustrate their numbers (both the greatest and the least) by drawing rods and units.  This helps to visually support tens and ones grouping for students.

Place Value Draw:

1.  Begin by removing all the face cards from a deck of cards.  In this game and Ace will equal 1.

2.  Player 1 will draw a card from the deck.  They must say out loud whether they will place this card in their tens place or their ones place.  (It would be helpful to draw a place value mat on a piece of paper for each player.  This way the player can say which place they will put their card in, and then lay the card in that place.)

3.  Player 2 will do the same.

4.  Player 1 will draw a second card an put it in the remaining place.

5.  Player 2 will do the same.

6.  The Player who has created the greatest number gets one point.  If they also created the greatest number possible with the two digits they drew, that player will get a second point.

7.  Keep playing until all the cards have been drawn.  The player with the highest score wins.



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