21 Exciting Math Games and Puzzles to Make Your Child Smarter


A lot of children finds maths a lot difficult, whereas for others, Mathematics is the subject that they enjoy the most. But, this all depends on how you teach your kid to play with numbers right from their childhood days. You can include a number of activities like puzzles, games and word problems to teach them as Maths is not just about learning the formulas. So, we have listed some of the very interesting mathematical games for your kid that will make this subject a lot more interesting for him. These are given as below:

Math Games and Puzzles: Games that Help Your Child Think Critically

math games for kids

Fact Families

The concept of fact family game is completely based on multiplication and division. For instance, 2*4=8, 8/4=2.

Take 20-30 paper strips and begin to write any four numbers in each of the paper strips. Ask your kid to take a strip of paper and now ask your kid to find the unrelated number among the four numbers written on the paper and make a fact family out of the rest of the three numbers. Then, you just have to set a timer and see how many sets your child can solve within that time span.


Graph puzzle

This one is a little interesting because every child loves to draw and make pictures of cats, dogs and what not.

So, now you can do this on a graph paper. Give your child the number pairs, for instance (2,-2), (1,-3), (1,-5) etc. and ask your kid to make a figure using these pairs. Remind them of the X- axis and the Y-axis.

Multiplication war

For this you will need a deck of cards. You can assign a value of either 1 or 11 to the aces and value of 10 to cards like kings, queens and jacks.

Place the cards and upside down and ask the player to turn two cards at once and come up with the answer by multiplying the numbers written on the two cards. For instance, you have got 7 and 5, so the answer is 35. Set a timer and whoever comes with the most number of cards wins the game.


Number Pyramid

Make a pyramid of number of balls and fill up some of the balls with numbers while keeping the rest empty. The number in a ball is equal to the sum of the number in the two balls below. You can also use subtraction, multiplication or division instead of addition to make it more challenging.

Join the dots

Kids love playing these kind of games. You can take a print out of a picture that is to made by joining the dots and write several equations on each dot that will help your kid to solve the puzzle. These equations can be 4+9-3, 7+23-4 etc.

Picture Puzzle

Take an exciting picture puzzle from the net and use math codes or equations in place of the dots. Set the difficulty level on your own. Make the equations more difficult when your child begins to find the equations easier.

Number Crossword

We all have seen crosswords in the newspapers of magazines, but those test your English skills and not the mathematical ones. So for this, think about some maths questions and create a simple 5*5 grid on the paper. You can make some of the questions for “down” pattern and some for “across” pattern like a crossword.


Wastepaper basketball math

Take a wastebasket and throw the trash ball into the wastebasket 10 times each. Record the number on a sheet of paper and use these results for calculating ratio, percentages etc.

Sugar cube Volume

This will help your child to learn calculating volume. Ask your kid to build a prism of any size using the sugar cubes but in a rectangular shape and then, ask them to count the prism dimensions and record the answers and put the answers in the formula of volume.

Algebraic tic-tac-toe

Draw a tic-tac-toe grid of nine squares on a sheet of paper and write algebraic equations at the back of each square and solve these simultaneously. Every time you or your kid gets a right answer, mark it by an X or O and whoever does it in the shortest time period wins the game.

Minute maths

Begin the game by explaining about the number of seconds in a minute and ask them to do as many number of activities as they want but in a minute. These activities can be jumping jacks, one foot hopping or anything that they want. Let them do their activities and ask them every time when they thought that a minute has elapsed.


Cards for play value

Announce a two-digit number and give all the cards to your child. Then, ask your child to form the given number using the cards. For instance, you announced number 24, so they will take out the cards with number 2 and number 4. now, you will ask them what the number is and place the value of each card. For instance, 2 in tens place and 4 in the ones place.

Candy corn subtraction

This will help your child learn mathematical vocabulary. Cut out a triangle and divide it into three sections based on the colours and make a candy corn template out of it. You can select three colours, say orange, yellow and white.  Ask your kid to write minued in the yellow cut out, subtrahend in the orange cut out and the final answer in the orange cut out.

17-a math builder

Take a deck of cards and keep all the aces and numbered cards from 2 to 8, while separating all the other cards. Shuffle the cards and put them faced down on the table. You can ask each player to pull out five cards at once and then put the cards down once at a time. Whoever gets the closest number to 17 wins the game.

Hunt the prime number

For this, you will need a hundreds chart. You can take turns to Cross out all the composite numbers, which carry one point and circle the prime numbers, which carry three points at once. The player with the maximum points wins the game.


Animal picture puzzles

Well, this one is my favourite. You can take a number of animal pictures from the animal chart and assign a number to each animal. Take 2 or even 3 animals at once and forma n equation using these pictures and the numbers assigned to each. You can use addition, subtraction, division or all at once depending on the difficulty level.

Brain teasers

We all have loved this game in our childhood. This can be made easy or even difficult, depending upon you. Think of a number in your mind and ask your child to guess the number by providing him with mathematical hints. For instance, you thought of number 20, now ask your child to take number 10, add 30 to it and subtract 20 from the formed number. The answer is 20.

Hidden meaning

Form a grid of nine squares and write numbers in each of the boxes. Now, ask your child to arrange the numbers 1-9 such that the sum of the three numbers in any straight line equals 151.

Match stick equation

Get some matchsticks and ask your kid to form some interesting mathematical equations using the matchsticks. You can play this turn by turn and whoever forms the maximum number of equations in a time span of 60 seconds wins the game.


Guess the shape

Well, this one is pretty simple. You just need to draw a square and then a number of squares within the same square and ask your child to count to total number of squares in the given picture. You can take any shape, like a triangle, circle etc

Multiple choice questions

You can give your child some interesting word problems and provide with number of possible answers. They will solve the problem and then tick the correct answer.

Given above were 21 exciting math games and puzzles that will make your child smarter than the rest. Make sure to explain your kids about the rules of each and every game with intricate details and play along with him/her to make the games more interesting to your child.