One of my memories from elementary school was the collection of games that were on the shelves at the back of the classroom: an assortment of board games, card games, and dominoes. Whenever we had time to play games, we would rush to get our favorites. The dominoes were always high on my list, because there was so much I could do with them, everything from matching up the numbers and making patterns to standing them up and knocking them down.
Traditional dominoes have a variety of uses in the classroom. A simple internet search for “math domino games” yields thousands of ideas for using these tools to build number concepts. But eventually, the novelty wears off and they become more of a toy than a learning tool. But the matching aspect of dominoes lets us expand this teaching tool to domains beyond numbers.
Our new Dominoes feature questions and concepts on the topics of angle measurement, area and perimeter, volume, and algebraic expressions and equations. These tools help students practice these concepts in a fun, engaging game that can be used over and over in the classroom. Each game includes two unique sets of dominoes, allowing teachers to easily provide differentiated practice.
In groups of two to four, students can use the dominoes to play a traditional game of dominoes, taking turns and matching up answers to the questions or problems posed on another domino. These kinds of interactions encourage discussion about the concepts, as students verify one another’s responses and provide feedback.
Another activity can be done as a whole group. Give each student in the class one domino and challenge them to find the two dominoes that match up with each end of theirs. For example, a student with a domino showing 65° on the left and a diagram with an unknown value of 75° on the right would want to find one domino with a diagram with an unknown value of 65° on the right and another domino with the number 75° on the left.
These dominoes are another tool that engage students and make learning and practicing math concepts fun. They’ll be a great addition to the game shelf!