Amazing Maths Connections

Students in rooms 13 were really excited to hear that instead of doing ‘normal’ maths, we would play a game instead.

However, the game had been carefully selected to help students to achieve their next maths steps of being able to count on from another number, rather than reverting back to number one. The game is based on the popular Connect Four game and requires students to roll two dice and find their sum. As with the more familiar version, blocking strategies can be employed, and the first player to mark out a line of four is the victor.



As the teacher, my job was to roam and support the children to add on from one of the numbers rolled as well as to ensure that they worked cooperatively together. Children get to develop their quick recognition of the numbers on the dice (subitising) as well as practicing their adding-on skills via a fun medium. They are also listening to and following instructions while developing their social skills. The game links well to the following key competencies:

  • Using language, symbols and text (subitising)

  • Managing self (persevering, playing fairly)

  • Participating and contributing

  • Thinking

  • Relating to Others (supporting their learning partners)



Some students found it difficult not to revert back to counting all dots individually with each dice roll. With encouragement, all students demonstrated that they could achieve our goal.



Emma - The game was a fun activity. I normally think maths is boring but I would be really into it if we played more games.

Te Ramaroa - We counted on from 1 number to find the total.

Lilly - It was fun - we all enjoyed it! We were learning to be nice and add our numbers

Blade - I won the challenge but it didn’t matter because we both achieved our goals.

Chloe - It was fun maths - we did our maths without thinking. This is the most fun ever and I want to take the game home to play.

Keywords: Subitising, learning through play, adding from 1 number.