The Adding Tree (A Prettty Fun Math Card Game)


I found a version of this activity in the The Home Instructor’s Guide for Singapore Math that we are using, where they call it “Pyramid”.  Both older kids loved it and Joseph, especially.  He made me play every day for weeks when we first discovered it.  It not only helped us learn addition, but also helped me to discover that he needs glasses (because I noticed him straining to see the numbers when we played at night)!  How is that for a powerful game?  I had Molly do the math in her head but allowed Joseph a “cheat sheet”, which you can see in the left of this picture.

What you need: One deck of playing cards, without any of the picture cards.  Aces count as 1.

Set the cards up in a pyramid of 6 rows overlapping as you go.

Put the rest of the cards face down in a pile at the bottom of the pyramid.

Pick a number from 6 – 16.  Pairs of cards that together add up to the target number can be removed from the pyramid.  You may only remove a card if you remove the cards touching it below first.  If you remove a pair, you go again.  Continue until there are no more pairs to be made.  Then it is the other persons’ turn.  The person with the most pairs at the end wins.


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