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# Math and Special Education Blog — Teaching Tip

## Learning math through games

I always made time in the week to play math games with my students. Not only did it make math learning fun, little did they know they were also practicing their multiplication facts, and problem-solving skills!

There are many different kinds of math games, from traditional, commercial games you can purchase to more simple dice or card games you can make. Keep reading to learn about a number of wonderful games that can be used as part of your math instruction.

## Why use games in the classroom?

I loved playing games as a kid. Candy Land, Battleship, Scrabble, and Uno were among my favorites. If asked as a child, I wouldn’t have described these games as “educational.” They were fun, an escape from learning, the antithesis of the facts and figures and numbers you memorize in school. Yet, if we take a closer look at many children’s games, we’ll find that they’re actually quite complex learning environments that develop a variety of important problem solving, social, and emotional skills. These are the same skills we try to impart to our students every day!

Keep reading to find out how games promote learning!

## What's so hard about learning to count?

### Why is counting important?

Counting is the basis for many different math concepts, including computation, place value, estimation, and understanding fractions and decimals. Developing strong counting skills will build a solid foundation for mastering concepts in the later grades.

Keep reading to find out why counting is so tricky!

## Modeling Fractions with an Area Model

### What is an area model?

An area model is a useful tool you can use to model certain fraction concepts. An area model is a square that you divide into equal-sized rectangles to represent a fraction. Keep reading to learn some math concepts you can model with fraction sticks and area models!