2020 Summer Game #16: What’s on Top

Did you enjoy last week’s game, Piggyback Race? Although it wasn’t a super complicated game, we sure thought it was fun. More importantly, the kids were practicing their multiplication facts!

If you’re wanting to ramp up the multiplication fact review, this week’s game, What’s on Top, is just what you’re looking for. This is game P12 in the Math Card Games book written by Dr. Joan A. Cotter. It is another simple game, but here the players need to know their facts. Again, use the AL Abacus or the Skip Counting patterns for assistance.

This game can have two or three players. Or, of course, two or three teams! We’re going to use one set of Multiplication cards. Since we used the 3s from last week, let’s use them again. Lay the cards out in order, putting a slight gap after the fifth card.

We’re also going to need an assortment Basic Number cards for the multipliers; 15 or more Basic Number cards per player, but no 0s. These are to be placed face down forming the stock.

Finally, we need about 15 markers per player. The Math Card Games book suggests using the Clock Cards face down for two players. They come in two colors and stack nicely. The Walsh family uses the Colored Tiles. I’m sure you can find something around the house you can use.

What's on Top game girl

The first player turns over a basic number card. He then multiplies the number of the set, 3s today, by the multiplier, the Basic Number card in hand, and places his marker on or above the correct card. He also call out the equation.

Since we are using 3s and our player turned over a 7, he puts his marker on the 21 and says “3 × 7 = 21.”

The next child takes her turn.

If someone finds a marker already at the product they need, they puts their marker on top of the other marker in place.

Play continues until all the markers are used up. To determine the winner, count only the top marker cards.

An advanced version of the What’s on Top game is What’s on Top Now, game P13. Here we will mix up the row of multiplication cards. Now we’re going to have to know our facts and “skip counting” won’t assist!

Enjoy these games and see you next week!


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