Solve Equations Snap
'Roll the die and win the cards. Solve the equation before your partner does!'
"x" is used to represent a number we don't know, but want to find. Roll the dice and "substitute" the number on the dice into your equation in place of "x". If this "solves the equation" (i.e. results in both sides of the equals sign being the same) then you win your partner's cards. As you feel more confident you can progress through the levels from: Apprentice to Scholar to Mathmagician! There are a number of different games you can play . . .
The pictures below show a winning hand for each of the games described at the bottom of this page: Die Card Snap, Connect 3 and Matching Pairs and Threes. Viewing these photos before reading the rules for each game (in the 'Description' section at the bottom of this page) should help clarify how they can be played:
Print and cut out the cards below that have been allocated to your group (or use the pre-prepared laminated cards your teacher gives you):
Unknowns ("x") one side of equals sign only:
- Apprentice's Equations six sided dice numbered 1 to 6
- Scholar's Equations six sided blank dice or renumber using stickers: 1,2,3,5,7,9
- Mathmagician's Equations six sided blank dice or renumber using stickers:
Unknowns ("x") both sides of the equals sign only:
- Scholar's Equations six sided dice numbered 1 to 6
- Mathmagician's Equations six sided dice renumbered using stickers: 1,2,3,5,7,9
See "Description" below for different gameplays.
Deal two or three cards to each player (learners play in pairs).
The remaining pack is placed face down in the middle.
Roll the dice, if a player has an equation whose solution corresponds to the number on the dice they “WIN” that card, place it face up (for their partner to check) in front of them and pick a new one from the remaining pack in the middle.
Players may use pen & pencil (and calculator, at teacher’s discretion).
The player who wins the most card at the end of a given time, or when there are no cards left to pick, is the victor. You can play the same game but with 2 against 2 or 3 against 3 etc.
You can also play “SNAP” where if the two cards have the same solution then the first to say “SNAP” gets them both. This game play is advisable only for very competent learners as they will have little time to resolve two equations.
There are many games that can be played using these cards. Why not get students to create their own gameplay or set of cards? Below are two further examples:
- Students lay the cards out in a rectangle, face down. Each player can turn over one card at time by saying what "x" value will make each side of the equals sign the same. The first to get 3 in a row wins (Connect 3!).
Matching Pairs and Threes
- Students play in groups of four. All cards are dealt out. If two, or three, cards have the same solution then the student lays these on the table, face up, as a matching pair, or three. Matching threes are worth two matching pairs. When students have found all the matching pairs or threes they can, they take it in turns, starting from the dealers right and going round the table clockwise, to pick a card at random from their partner. If a player has laid down a matching pair and they pick the third matching card from another player, they add this to the existing pair already on the table to make a matching three. If the new card makes a pair, they can simlilarly, lay their matching pair on the tablbefore offering their cards, blind, to the next player. When there are no cards left the player with the most matching threes wins. Laying down matching pairs allows the game to proceed faster than if each player had to wait for three matching equations, though it can be played with matching threes only.