2020 Summer Game #6: Race to the Amount

How is summer going for everyone? Now that the festivities of the 4th of July are all wrapped up and summer is warming up, we can say summer is officially here.

This week we’re going to focus on an application of math: money! Race to the Amount, game M11 in the Math Card Games book, is a fantastically fun game. It’s pretty much guaranteed to bring out the “sillies”, as my mom would say.


The purpose of this game, besides having fun, is to practice making amounts quickly with a specific set of money cards using as few cards as possible. This uses the skill of adding as well as critical thinking while working with money.

Start off with each player having the following cards in their hand: one 50¢ card, one 25¢ card, two 10¢ cards, one 5¢ card, and four 1¢ cards. If you have the Money Card Deck, you’ll have enough cards in the deck for three players. If one person wants to designate a random card as a 1¢ card, four players can play. Of course, you could also play the game with real coins using the quantity listed.

You will also need an assortment of 12 to 15 Multiplication Cards. These will be the amounts that everyone is racing towards. Lay these cards face down in the center of the playing area. For a longer game, use more multiplication cards.

When everyone has their nine money cards in hand, turn over the top multiplication card. Players race to make the amount listed on the target card with the cards in their hands. The first person who lays the correct amount down earns a point. If there is a tie, both players are awarded a point.

Players then pick up their cards and get ready for the next race. The goal is to have the most points at the end of the game!

As you will quickly see, this quickly becomes a hilarious situation. When I was playing this with a group of kids ranging from 7 to 11, we frequently had to stop the game because we were laughing so hard!

If you have older kids and want to challenge them, use 30 to 40 multiplication cards numbering less than 50. Turn over two cards for each round! Players need to add the amounts mentally, then race to the total amount.

I hope you enjoy this game, as well as the “sillies”. As always, keep in touch and let us know how your summer games are progressing. Have a great day and play a math card game!



  1. Kelly Briggs says

    Thank you for all the summer encouragement. We will try this game today for our math lesson.
    Thanks! I own all the manipulatives needed for levels A-C as well as the card games book, so just the letter and number of the game is sufficient. Thank you so much. RightStart has saved our homeschool. I wish that I could use something easier on me as a teacher but nothing else was working for my kids. Because of RS, math is not an insurmountable task. It is still work, and often difficult, but doable. Thank you so much.

    • Kathleen Lawler says

      Delighted to hear that you’re enjoying these blogs and that your children (and you!) are succeeding in math.

  2. Thanks for these suggestions. Love that they come right to my inbox, which is where I go first thing in the morning. I would actually like them a more frequently! I SO need that push to pull out a game. Please keep them coming.

  3. I didn’t realize I could get these game ideas emailed to me. I need to sign up.
    This game could also be good for my older kids to keep their money skills up. 🙂

    I do love the photographs you include. That gives the posts a nice personal touch. Plus, my daughters like seeing other kids using the same “toys” they are using for math. 🙂

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