# Hard Math Games: Practice Advanced Math Through Play

## What Are Hard Math Games?

What is defined as a hard math game will likely differ depending on the person you are talking to. However, a hard math game does have a few characteristics that will help to identify them from easier math games. For instance, harder math games often involve many steps that your child must follow to determine an answer. As your child works through these steps, he or she may also have to use multiple mathematical operations. Also, any activity that encourages your child to think critically will be more of a challenge.

Another way to challenge your advanced student is with word problems. These thought-provoking problems will require your child to apply what he or she knows to a specific situation. For a little extra challenge, use word problems that contain unnecessary information. That way, your child will have to discriminate between the crucial and irrelevant information.

### What Is My Value?

To prepare for this activity, write a variety of equations that include variables for your child to solve. For example, you could have your child solve for x in an equation like 3x - 8 = 15.

For each correct answer, award your child one point. For any incorrect answers, deduct one point from your child's running total. Feel free to make this game more competitive by setting a goal for your child to work towards, such as earning ten points.

### Swapping Roles

For this activity, your child will be the one creating word problems and you will be the one solving them! Before beginning this activity, write some common features of word problems on index cards, such as the type of operation that should be used or specific numbers that should be included. Ask your child to draw a card and create a word problem using the information on the card.

This activity will allow your child to think critically about the word problem from a different perspective. After your child is done, you should solve it and check your answer against your child's to make sure he or she completed it correctly.

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