# Grab the Dragon

I learnt a wonderfully fun new maths game yesterday while working with my colleague teacher. It is one that she has played in her Number Groups for some time now. I love it! I came straight home and made a set. It is very simple to make and the best part is the countless ways it can be differentiated to cater for all needs in your classroom.

Start with a set of popsticks. You can make the set as big or small as you need. Number them with a permanent marker on the end. One number on each. I made 1-30, but a set to 100 would be ideal. Use the jumbo popsticks if you have them. I only had small at home, but next time I am at the shops I am going to stock up on the big ones!

Select a group of numbers that is suitable for your small group of learners (e.g. 1-20 or 1-100).
Turn the sticks over. Put a little toy dragon with the sticks.

Each student collects 5 sticks. To differentiate, you could ask some groups to take 10. Others could take 3. The more sticks, the harder the task.

Students turn their sticks over and look at the numbers. They must then start to put them into order from smallest to biggest number. You can, at this point, help children with the strategy of sorting. Tell them to take a stick, determine if its a relatively big, small or middle number, put it at the beginning, middle or end of the line. Once most are sorted generally, they can further differentiate by looking at two individual sticks and deciding where they should be placed in relation to one another (e.g. does 23 come before or after 26).

Each student sorts their own 5 sticks into correct order....

The first player to order their sticks, can GRAB THE DRAGON! This player may be determined the winner. If time permits, you could ask your students to play 4 or even 5 rounds of this game. I told you it was fun! And simple! A teacher's two favourite words!