At a recent game night in our home, our family rediscovered Monopoly. The last time we had played it, one kid was a toddler and the other a preschooler, so *I* pretty much played it for them!
This time around, with both kids in elementary school, the family enjoyed a whole new perspective to Monopoly. I was reminded of how much value this age-old game still holds, in terms of teaching and reinforcing arithmetic concepts. Every transaction in Monopoly is an exercise in math facts.
Buy a city – count in 10s, 20s or 100s.
Pay rent – understand place value.
Collect rent and give back change – see subtraction in action.
Owe 20 but out of bills – figure out other ways to make a 20.
That’s just the beginning of possibilities. My third grader was introduced to the basics of mortgages and financial planning, concepts that he will revisit often and build upon in the years to come.
Monopoly made our family game night fun and productive. In true Zeno spirit, it reinforced that math is important and fun all at the same time. Family game nights are one important way to practice essential math skills and boost math confidence in a social, non-threatening environment.