Preschoolers can get hands on with math learning thanks to The Rocket 10, a math game with multiple ways to play. The centerpiece of the game is a double-sided rocket in which blue and green "fuel" pegs are placed. You also get a variety of challenge cards, number cards, prize cards, and a soft-sided die. The instruction booklet offers three game variations, with digital resources and printable activities available for more play at the PlayMiniland website.
The first game helps kids break down the number 10. You pick a challenge card and insert the number of blue pegs shown on the card into the rocket. Then, count up those pegs and choose the correct blue number card. Then place green pegs in the remaining empty positions, count how many green pegs there are, and find the matching green number card. Answers are on the back of each challenge card. In this way, kids can see that 9+1=10, for instance.
In the second game, kids must use addition and subtraction to fuel or defuel the rocket. Roll the die and insert that number of pegs into the rocket. Find the matching number card and place it in front of the rocket. On the next die roll, you might have to remove a peg or add more, based on the number shown. Find the matching number card and place it along with any pegs that needed to be removed in front of the rocket. Keep playing in the same way until all the holes on the rocket have been filled.
And the third game is designed to help kids become familiar with even and odd numbers. Using the number cards, kids are first given a visual as to what the odd numbers look like: always a fuel peg on its own with no pair. Then the cards are shuffled and displayed in the card sorter so that only the number, not the pegs, are showing. Kids must say whether or not the number is even or odd, and can put pegs into the rocket to help them check their answer.
This is definitely a game that will require parent (or teacher) participation to guide little kids through the play, and that's great for parent-child interaction. We like that there are multiple games to play and think that the large rocket ship game piece will entice kids to want to play. It provides a little bit of roleplay to the math learning, as kids pretend to be engineers fueling up the rocket ship for takeoff. This is a fun and hands-on way to introduce early math concepts.
The Rocket 10 focuses on manipulative mathematics for ages 3 to 7.
The toy includes a two-sided rocket, 20 green pegs, 20 blue pegs, a storage bag, a soft die, 18 challenge cards, six prize cards, 40 number cards, and a card sorter.
From the PlayMiniland website, you'll find digital resources and printable activities to complement the physical Rocket 10 game.
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