Cards: a useful tool for playful learning

Cards to learn and play with

Cards can be used for a lot of games to strengthen skills like math and make fun assignments with it.

Picture 1: More, less or equal:

In the middle of the table, there are 3 blocks with the signs <, > or = on them. With each turn, the players have to turn a card. Looking at both cards, they have to see if it’s more, less or equal and have to take the right block. If it’s right, they can give their card to the other player. If it’s wrong the other player can give his card to the player who got it wrong. You can compare it to the game jungle speed.

Picture 2: the right sum

You only use 1 to 10 for this game. The players have to turn two cards around at the same time. When they add or deduct the cards and the solution is on one of the blocks, they have to grab it. The one who grabs it can give his cards to the other player. The player who had no cards remaining is the winner of the game.

Picture 3: making 10

You only use 1 to 10 for this game. Each player has a stack of cards. They have to get rid of them by making 10 with the card that they have and a card in the middle of the table. (5+5, 3+7, 8+2…)

Clock and assignments

Picture 4:

To start this game you have to put the cards on the table like a clock. 1 card is being placed in the middle of the circle. You keep dividing the cards until you have one card left. This card is placed next to the stack in the middle. You have to look at the card and count where it should be on the clock. On this spot, you take another card.  When you get a king, you have to place it in the middle of the circle and take a card there. The game is finished when all four kings are found. When you have no cards remaining on the clock, you won the game.

Picture 5:

A minute to win it: You can challenge the kids to do a competition of a minute to win it. Who can win the most games?
– shuffle the deck and try to put it back in the right order by numbers.
– try to make a house of cards with 24 pieces.
– try to turn the whole deck around at once.
– put a card over the edge of the table and kick it up with your hand and catch it. With each catch, you add one more card. Who will have the most in the end?

The four seasons

Four seasons card game

To play the four season game, you need 4 copies of each card.

2 copies of each card are being placed in the middle of the table like a memory. The remaining cards are being divided between all players. The players put the stack of cards in front of them and turn the first two cards. They put them next to the stack. Each turn the children have to find a card in the middle that is the same as one of the two cards in front of them. If they succeed, they can have another try and take a new card from their stack. When they can’t find the same card, it’s the next players turn. The person who has no stack cards remaining is the winner of the game.

Game variants and ideas

– Before you play the game with the children, you can play a game of which cards match with which season. When they know this, you can give them a season card to play the card game. Then they have to find all the cards that belong to the season on their card.
– When they find a matching pair, they have to tell a story about it. For example a memory or something they would like to do in the summer or another season.
– you can add or remove cards/seasons to make it more difficult or easier.
– You can also play it as a normal memory or a quartet.



Flower power: think fast or take all the cards

Flower game

This is a card game where you have to think quickly. There are four flowers in the game. A sunflower, a tulip, a rose and a violet. The cards are being divided between all players. Each player turns a card without looking at it and place it in the middle of the table. Then the player has to name the object he sees on the card. You would think it’s rather easy to just name an object you are seeing, but here comes the catch. You can’t say the name of a flower twice.

To make the game a little bit harder, there are also cards with a red cross over the flowers. When they have this card, you can’t name the flower that is crossed. Because of this, you will get in a situation where you have a red cross and the same flower. You can only use the names of the flowers in the game.  When you do say it twice or name the flower with a red cross, you have to take all the cards that have been placed in the middle of the table. You have to play the game fast so that there is not much time to think. If you wait more than 5 seconds then you also have to take all the cards.

Once a player has no cards remaining, he is the winner of the game.