Thursday, January 28, 2016

Prime Climb: A beautiful, colorful, mathematical board game

I haven't gotten a chance to play Prime Climb (amazon affiliate link here) yet, but it looks so good that I can't help writing a post about it now!  It's meant for ages 10 and up, but could also be enjoyed  by some younger kids.  From the amazon description:
Prime Climb is a beautiful, colorful, mathematical board game designed for 2 to 4 players. 
Roll the dice and add, subtract, multiply and divide your way to the center of the board, picking up Prime cards and bumping your opponents back to start as you go. The first to land both pawns on 101 wins the game! 
Everyone can learn to multiply and divide using Prime Climb's unique color coding. Inspire deeper mathematical understanding while mastering arithmetic! Prime Climb is a perfect game for families & schools, kids & adults. Awaken your love of math, with Prime Climb!
After looking at a few reviews (such as here and here), a few things stick out to me as being really awesome:

  • Prime Climb uses color to represent prime factorization (if 2 is orange and 3 is green, then 6 is half orange and half green).  For visual learners, this game could really help them understand prime factorization.  Plus it makes it more intuitive for younger kids who aren't yet fluent at multiplication and division. 
  • To move around the board, players role two 10-sided dice, and each of the results can be added, subtracted, multiplied or divided against the number either of their pawns currently occupies.  So there are lots of possibilities to consider on every turn... like the game 24 (amazon affiliate link here).
  • If you land on a prime, you get a special prime card. 
  • The game is very adaptable... you could limit the allowable operations to make it accessible for younger kids, play as solitaire, use only one pawn per person, etc.   
Prime Climb was made by Math For Love, and their website is definitely worth a visit (especially if you live near Seattle - they have weekend classes, host an annual Julia Robinson Mathematics Festival, and do professional development workshops).  The game came out of a successful Kickstarter campaign, and has since won many awards.

Clicking image leads to an Amazon affiliate link

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