Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Holiday Gift Guide 2017: Awaken Your Child's Love of Math this Holiday Season with Math Games from Math 4 Love (Review)

Disclosure: I was sent samples from the vendor in exchange for an honest review. All views shared are mine and mine alone.

Transforming how math is taught and learned

Last month during a homeschool co-op game meetup, my girls and I were introduced to a wonderful game line for kids (and families to enjoy together) that was math-based.  Have you heard about Math 4 Love?  Don't worry if you haven't as I will share about this wonderful company and two of their products which my family recently had the opportunity to try out and we LOVE. :-)

First, here is a little background on Math for Love --

"We are Katherine Cook and Daniel Finkel, the folks behind Math For Love, a math education company based in Seattle, Washington. We lead professional development for teachers, design curriculum, develop math games, and speak & write on math education.

In spring of 2014, we launched our first board game on Kickstarter and successfully funded Prime Climb, which won six awards and received rave reviews from fans and critics. It is now on its fifth printing.
Spreading the love of math is what we do, and after Prime Climb, we saw the need for an equally compelling math game for younger kids. We had already been exploring a suite of games that could be used with a standard card deck; after conversations with Preschool, Kindergarten, and 1st Grade teachers, we decided that a more thoughtfully-designed deck would have major advantages in playability, math learning, and fun. Tiny Polka Dot was born!
Tiny Polka Dot comes with instructions for twelve different games to play with kids of different ages. These games evolved from games we invented and adapted for our Pre-K - 2nd grade curriculum. The games were so popular and so effective, we realized we needed to make them available to everyone."

They successful ran two Kickstarter campaigns to have their games funded, so this shows that people believed in their ideas and wanted their games to fruition. 


Like I said, I was sent two of their popular math games to share with my family -- Tiny Polka Dot and Prime Climb.  I had reached out the company after we came home from our co op game day as the girls couldn't stop talking about Prime Climb, which they were watching the older kids playing non-stop.  They said the game reminded them of our daily math drills, where I call out math problems to them and they have to solve the problem as quickly as they can. Even though this game is for children ages 10+, they were able to calling out answers as they added, subtracted and multiplied along with the older kids.  Prime Climb is a fast-paced game, which blends both strategy and chance. Kids will love mastering math in a fun way.  Yes, you read that will fall in love with math...who would have thought, right? :-)

Here is more about Prime Climb...

Math for Love Prime Climb

Prime climb is a beautiful, colorful, mathematical board game designed for 2 to 4 players. 

"Roll the dice and add, subtract, multiply and divide your way to the center of the board, picking up prime cards and bumping your opponents back to start as you go. The first to land both pawns on 101 wins the game! everyone can learn to multiply and divide using prime climb's unique color coding. Inspire deeper mathematical understanding while mastering arithmetic! prime climb is a perfect game for families & schools, kids & adults. Awaken your love of math, with prime climb."

"Prime Climb is so mathematical that great questions are easy to create from the game. Teachers have used Prime Climb 
in the classroom with great success, especially with students in grades 3-8."


My girls are not dividing yet, so when I played this game with them, I took out the prime cards that told them to divide, as well as any tricky multiplication cards.  They had so much fun playing our "jr." edition of the game.  I know that as they get older and are advancing their math skills that this game will become a favorite of theirs, and one that we will use on a weekly basis to strengthen their math skills, and have them love math like they do now. :-)

In addition to Prime Club, the folks at Math 4 Love also sent us Tiny Polka Dot, which was geared more towards my girls' age range.  

This card game is perfect for kids ages 3-8+ who are learning to love math.  The game will teach the basics of math including counting and early numeracy to arithmetic and logic.  

The award-winning, family-friendly, classroom-ready, number-loving, playful learning game

More about this game:

:Tiny Polka Dot is a collection of mathematical games for 3 to 8 year-olds, packed into one colorful card deck. 

It is:
  • Easy and intuitive to learn
  • Incredibly fun to play
  • A joy for families
  • Invaluable for teachers
  • Mathematically rich and relevant
The games you can play with the Tiny Polka Dot deck develop with your child, allowing you to find the right game for them, whether they are just learning how to count, working on memorizing addition and subtraction facts, or exploring deeper number patterns.

Tiny Polka Dot cards come in six suits, each with eleven cards representing the numbers from 0 to 10. Each suit uses a different representation. These are Ten Frames, Big and Little Dots, Circles, Doubles Plus One, Numerals, and Dice Patterns."


What is so great about this game is that it will grow with your child, and can be used in different ways as they get older to reinforce the math they are learning.  The Tiny Polka Dot colorful card deck can be used to play 16 easy-to-learn games that will help kids fall in love with numbers!  You will be amazed at easy it is to adapt the card deck and games for your child's age and their math abilities.


My girls are wrapping up 2nd grade homeschooling and I am slowing introducing 3rd grade curriculum to them.  They both love math and it seems to come easy to them, so I like to cover this subject daily with lessons, math drills, and fun math games.  In addition to content I put together for the girls, I also let them choose a game or two to play during play time.  I have found the girls are quick to grab Tiny Polka Dot from the shelf. The hard part is choosing which game we will play with this fun card deck.


We have only had this game for a few weeks, but we have been putting it to good use with our at-home homeschooling, and also bringing it to our weekly co op meetups where kids get to bring and share games with other homeschoolers.  This game has become an instant hit with kids of all ages.  I love seeing the younger kids getting happy when they can point to the dots and match them up with the correct numeral.  Matching up cards to find pairs of 10 is a favorite amongst the kids.  I have heard some of the parents say that this has been a struggle at home with their kids, trying to pair numbers to get to a particular sum.  It was like a light bulb went on in their kid's head when I brought out this game to play with them.  I have to agree with them, as I have seen improvements with the girls and their math skills when we play this game.  I can now say a number like "10" and my now 6 year old can tell me the different number combinations to reach this sum.  It truly is amazing to see. And, the smiles on my girls faces, and not tears, like so many parents see when it comes to math homework.

If you have a child who struggles with math, or you are looking to awaken a love of math in your child (young or old), you will want to visit the Math 4 Love website and learn more about these two award-winning math games.  I can't wait to see what future games this amazing math game company comes out next.  We will be in line with all our friends to buy whatever they release next. :-)

Disclosure: I was sent samples from the vendor in exchange for an honest review. All views shared are mine and mine alone.

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