Monday, 30 January 2017

KABOOM: a fun multiplication tables game

KABOOM is a great game to play to help develop quick recall of the multiplication tables.   It can be played with 2 or more and can be used as a group activity. 

Write multiplication sums on lolly sticks. (I brought mine in a certain High Street shop that only sells items for a pound).  You may wish to focus on a specific times table to suit the needs of your students.  On some of the lolly sticks write the word KABOOM.  I generally write three KABOOM sticks for each time table i.e. 12 sums: 3 KABOOM. The lolly sticks are then placed in a container so that they can be picked out randomly.

The students take turns to pick a lolly stick.  If the answer the sum correctly, they keep the stick.  If they are incorrect they are given the answer, possibly discussing ways to remember that fact, and return the stick to the pot.  If a student picks a KABOOM stick, all their sticks have to be returned into the pot.   The ratio of KABOOM sticks to sums should mean that all students playing will have a KABOOM moment. 

The game can be played continuously until stopped; however you may want to play for a set time or change the rule so that when a KABOOM stick is pulled out from the pot the sums go back in leaving the KABOOM lolly stick stays out in which case the game ends when the last lolly stick has been picked out from the pot. 

At the end of the game the students count their lolly sticks; the one with the most wins the game.

Try playing the game with your students so that they experience good modelling of taking turns, fair play and how to return the lolly sticks when you pick KABOOM with good humour.