Want to make times tables fun?
Alexandra Fitzsimmmons FRSA founded Maths on Toast in 2012 with help from an RSA Catalyst grant. Since then, they've developed a series of community events and family activities which have people making, playing, singing – and doing maths at the same time.
Their latest innovation is a game called Number Rumbler. After lots of participants asked for help with times tables (which seem to be a source of stress in some households!) they decided to raise funds to address this. The game emerged through a series of workshops with children and parents in Camden. It’s a simple matching game, but rather than match identical cards, you look for matches that ‘mean the same number’ – so 2 x 3 is 2 + 2 + 2 or :::
The beauty of this has more than one dimension. Firstly it creates a fun, challenging game which adults often enjoy as much as children. Second, as you play, you’re developing something called number sense – a deeper understanding of how numbers work and relate to one another, which stands you in good stead when you’re working on more complicated maths.
During September, Maths on Toast raised £7000 through crowdfunding for the first print run of the game. It was a rollercoaster month in which they also received great feedback from children and from National Numeracy, and were featured on the blog at the British Science Association. The first copies of Number Rumbler will be sent out in December.
You can take a look at the game by watching the video on their crowdfunding site, where you can still buy it for the bargain price of £7 (plus p&p). In buying it, of course, you’ll be doing more than just solving your stocking-filler dilemmas and transforming your own family’s experience of times tables. Maths on Toast is a charity (if a socially enterprising one!) so all profits go straight back into developing more fun maths. Imagine a world where all families found maths fun!
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