Using games and storybooks

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Games and storybooks are great resources to use in the classroom and are engaging for students. To be an effective teaching tool, the maths involved in the game or story needs to be made explicit. Games and books can be used at any level, not just in the primary years.

Games provide students with opportunities to follow rules (an algorithm), plan a strategy (problem-solving) and often need a good understanding of probability. Devising their own game will enable students to practise these skills and enhance communication skills.

A good story can engage students, develop their vocabulary and show how maths is all around us. To deepen understanding, follow a story with related maths activities.

The teacher:

  • when reading a storybook highlights the mathematics and mathematical language
  • follows the reading with related maths activities
  • uses games to introduce and practise mathematical skills and concepts.


The students:

  • recognise the mathematics in the stories they read
  • recognise the mathematics in the games the play
  • make connections between the world around them and the mathematics they do in the classroom
  • enrich their vocabulary and communication skills.

Examples of the strategy in action

Learning Mathematics Through Games Series: 1. Why Games?

This article explains more fully the benefits of using games when teaching mathematics and how to use them in the classroom.

Bookcase Maths: Teaching Maths Through Your Class Library

Find here some recommended books for each age group and mathematical topic.