ideas for teaching while your students are playing at recess? We painted
these ice cream scoops on our playground, which will help students K-5 target a
wide variety of skills. Check out some of these ideas! (By the way – if
you can’t paint your playground, some sidewalk chalk also works PERFECTLY!).
Cream Scoops: Math Games
numbers 1-20! Toss a beanbag to the ice cream cone and identify the
numeral you land on. If you land in the middle of a scoop, name all 3
they land on (or are closest to) and decide which number is more and which is
they land on (or are closest to) and add and/or subtract the 2 numbers.
OR toss a beanbag to an ice cream scoop and add up all 3 numbers.
You can keep a tally of your points using sidewalk chalk to practice
adding numbers as the total increases (and to find out who has the most points
at the end and WINS!).
Toss 2 beanbags to the ice cream scoops. Find the numbers they land on
(or are closest to) and multiply those numbers together. You can keep a
running tally of points to continue practicing addition (and to find out who
This was how this playground game came to life! Each of the ice cream scoops has a
fact family set in them. Toss a beanbag to the ice cream cone. If
you land on a scoop, explain how the numbers are related (e.g. 10 x 2 = 20, 20/2
= 10, etc.). Identify other numbers that could be factor of the top
number too! It gets better – what happens if you land on a cone or
cherry? Those numbers are different. If you look carefully, you
will notice that those numbers are PRIME numbers. Talk
about what that means with your students. This activity is LOADED with
math vocabulary and concepts that will help upper elementary students who are
struggling with these math skills.