I’ve recently been teaching and practicing ordinal numbers with my first grader. And although this is an important concept (and something we use in real life frequently), it seems like it’s not covered very thoroughly in many math curricula. So I created some fun additional practice! This low-prep ordinal numbers game can be played again and again.
Helping Kids Understand Counting Numbers v. Ordinal Numbers
If your kiddos are in first grade, they likely know how to count to answer, “How many?” and how to use counting numbers to represent quantities.
Ordinal numbers, however, represent the position rather than a quantity. This is a brand new use of numbers and kids may have trouble at first.
I suggest teaching ordinal numbers in the context of something kids would be familiar with, such as winning a race, or a sequence of events.
Then you can let kids partner up and play this simple BUMP game to practice!
Materials Needed for the Ordinal Numbers Game:
- Game pieces (unifix cubes, LEGO blocks, coins, etc.)
- Game board and printable die
How to Play this Ordinal Numbers Game:
To get it set up, print the game board and ordinal numbers die on card stock. For durability, I suggest laminating the game board as well.
Then cut out and assemble the die. Fold along the solid lines, then use the tabs to glue or tape it together into a cube.
Then you’re ready to play!
To begin, the first player rolls the die. They then place a game piece in the correct position on either of the strips (one starts from the left and the other starts from the right).
Players continue taking turns rolling the die and placing their game pieces on an appropriate square.
If a position square has another player’s game piece already, you can “bump” the player and put your piece there.
If one of your pieces is on the space, you can add a second game piece to “secure” the space. It can no longer be lost to another player.
Once all 12 spaces have been secured, the game is over.
The player who won the most spaces wins the game!
I hope this provides some simple additional practice with using ordinal numbers!
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