This Pirate booty maths game with gems brought to you by Sara-Jayne from Keep Up with the Jones family. Sara-Jayne is a fellow mum to boys, she has three under six and is a Junior School Teacher. This post is part of our learning with manipulatives series.
We’re having fun with a sparkly activity today. The rain has been creating puddles and our garden is one huge mud kitchen – and so as our oldest has been learning about pirates at school – and we were lucky enough to visit the HMS Victory in Portsmouth last week, we’ve decided on a pirating theme today to cheer us all up.
My boys love collecting little objects in boxes – toys, marbles, pennies, anything they find in the forest. They also love decorating their treasure boxes and this activity combines the two.
Pirate booty maths game with gems
You Will Need:
There are so many possibilities with this activity but we’ve gone down the maths path. It’s easy to differentiate for children of different abilities and ages. Our middle son is about to start reception year at school in September and loves counting, and so I decided to use it to reinforce his delight at being able to count reliably, whilst supporting our oldest, who is 6, with practising odd and even numbers.
How To Play Pirate booty maths game with gems:
Each player takes two sticks and looks at the numbers written on them
Every person counts out the amount of gems that matches the number on each of their sticks
They add the gems together to get a total and decide whether the sum is odd or even
If the answer is even, they get to swap their mini gems for a large gem of their choice
If the answer is odd, they get to keep their tiny gems
When the gems have been shared out, decorate the boxes
Points to remember:
Little ones will love this activity as it has sparkly gems as a reward of different shapes and sizes. You can talk about colour, shape, which is biggest or smallest. Look at the numbers of sides, edges, corners that a gem has. For older children, encourage counting in twos as opposed to counting one by one – with smaller children, one to one correspondence and touching the gems as they count is very important for them. When deciding whether the gems are an odd or even group, explain that when an object has a partner, it becomes an even number. If there is one gem without a friend, it’s an odd number.
We loved this game – and our boxes are pretty spectacular too!
See our other learning with manipulatives posts here: