3 Back to School Math Games that Foster Teamwork and Collaboration


It’s the start of another school year and with it comes all of the excitement, anticipation, and craziness!!!! There is always so much to do once you finally have your kiddos in front of you— teaching procedures, getting to know them, reinforcing positive behaviors, etc.

One of the things we really wanted to spend time on at the beginning of the year was helping students to learn how to work together. The goal being that we will have less issues with students working in groups throughout the year.

We decided to use some fun back to school math games as a way to help them to practice problem solving while working as a team. We did a different game each day and switched up the groups for each game.

We begin with reviewing place value in third grade so we decided to create place value games that centered around this topic. Check out the games that our students played and grab a FREE back to school math resource!

back to school math games

Card Swap

For the Card Swap math game students are put into groups of 4. There are 16 cards and each student gets dealt 4 random cards. The goal is to get the 4 cards that are connected with each other in some way in front of each student. In this case, they have to get four cards that represent the same number in different ways (base 10 blocks, written form, standard form, and expanded notation).The only catch is they aren’t allowed to talk!

What’s My Number

In this math game the same 4 digits are passed out to one student and the rest of the group. That student creates a number and hides it. Then the rest of the group has to work together to try and figure out what the number is asking only yes and no questions that they agree on together.

Guess the Rule

For this math game, one student chooses a rule. The rest of the group holds up number cards and the student with the rule tells them if the number goes in the yes or no category. After they have sorted the numbers, the students must work together to try and figure out the rule!

In all honesty, some groups struggled more than others at first in figuring out how to play the games, but once they caught on they had a blast! It was a great opportunity for students to really solve problems together and they were very motivated.

After we played the game the first day, a student came up to us beaming and said, “This was so much fun!” The words that warm every teacher’s heart!

We would highly recommend you try out some back to school math games to help with team building as school gets underway. If you would like to try out these math games, they are a part of our Back to School Math Pack. Check it out here on TPT.

back to school math games

We’d like to give you a free back to school math activity to start your year off right! Click below to grab this activity. Happy Back to School!!!

back to school math games

Check out our blog posts below for some other engaging math activities!

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