#4 reasons of using games in
the classroom!
...A
game can generate an unreasonable amount of practice...
...A
game will often result in the making of generalised statements...
...A
game can allow the introduction of ideas that are difficult to
develop in other ways...
...Games
seem to be able to lead pupils to work above their normal level...
...A
game leads pupils to talk mathematics...
...A
game can create discussion of all kinds...
...Games
put pressure on players to work mentally...
...A
game does not define the way in which a problem is to be solved or
worked out...
...A
game often can be played at more then one level...


Introducing Games in the Classroom
This article is
taken from the introduction to "Using Games in the
Classrooms", a photocopiable resource published by
The Association of Teachers of Mathematics .
If
a game is to be played by the whole class at the
same time, working in groups of 6 or so, then
clearly some thought has to be given to how the
pupils are taught the rules and procedures of the
game. What follows here are some thoughts about how
to make this as efficient as possible.
It will be noted that although the games in this
booklet are organised by the area of geometry to
which they relate, there are in each section games
of a similar type, e.g. pairs games. The reuse of
different types of game for different mathematical
purposes simplifies their introduction greatly as
the class have only to be told that it is a pairs
game or a happy family game and they know how to
play it. At most it may be necessary to look at the
particular type of card to be used.
In teaching games to large groups I have found three
different methods that work well depending on the
game and the situation.

Choose a set of
pupils to come to the front of the class and
play the game as a demonstration, possibly with
assistance in decision making from the whole
class. If this is done it may be useful to have
largesize cards, which can be seen by the whole
class or cards made from OHT film and cut up so
that they can be projected.
The use of pairs
working as a single player has already been
discussed as a way of encouraging discussion and
indeed concept development. It has other
advantages in that a larger number of pupils can
use the same set of materials, so that there are
fewer groups in the classroom to setup and
manage and less materials to produce and store!
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With My
Rummy, the players play the game with more
or less skill or perception depending on
their own competence. They will often learn
to develop their level of play by watching
and listening to the other players.
Storage is
inevitably a problem and I found myself losing
and remaking sets of games until I adopted the
system of keeping a class set of any particular
game in a plastic box clearly marked with its
name! Plastic bags of games do not work at all
well. If the pupils can manage the size of card
shown in this book, then it is quite easy to
store class sets in a small box. I found that
they were big enough, but the cards can, of
course, be enlarged if this is felt desirable.
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With My
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able to manage your classroom games much
better than before!
