Do you have a kiddo who can easily grasp higher-level math concepts but gets bogged down with careless errors?
Does your child understand how to get to an answer but lacks the automaticity to get there?
You are not alone.
My oldest son gets so frustrated with those multiplication facts. He knows how to get from A-Z, but not as quickly as he’d like to.
I remember having to memorize times tables as a kid and I hated it. Speed drills gave me anxiety. And yet, as a parent, I want my kids to learn those facts!
Thankfully, with homeschooling, you need not torture your child with drill-and-kill. Instead, you can practice those math skills the fun way! Worksheets and speed drills build frustration and anxiety, but games offer a low-key, enjoyable way to practice skills. When you practice math skills through play, you are building positive memories about mathematics and increasing your child’s self-confidence.
HoliMaths X: An Elementary Multiplication Math Game
*Disclosure: I received HoliMaths X at no cost and was paid for my time to write a review. I was not required to write a positive review and, as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. I only share products that I would use with my own family and those that I think other families will enjoy.
If you’ve been following our story, you already know that we are a game-loving family. I love the hands-on, experiential learning that a well-designed game provides… it is stealth learning at its best!
I’ve been on a quest to find fun ways to practice those times tables and so I was thrilled to hear about HoliPlay’s HoliMaths X. I’m always searching for fantastic math games to add to our repertoire! Today, I’m going to tell you why this homeschooling mom thinks HoliMaths X is a great choice for the game closet… especially if you need more math play in your homeschool routine.
(Pssst… stay tuned because there is a giveaway at the end of this post!)
Picking the perfect math game for your homeschool
As someone who relies heavily on carefully-selected games for home learning, I know a good game when I see one. It has taken years of trial and error to get here. We have encountered countless game duds along the way. There have been games that my kids hated from the beginning, games that didn’t hold their attention, and games that did nothing but collect dust. Nowadays, I am highly selective when it comes to picking a game for use in our homeschool.
Here are some things I look for when selecting a game for our homeschool:
- Recommended number of players – Are you looking for a one-player game or a game the entire family can play?
- Age recommendations – What do the game manufacturers recommend?
- Time to play – Families these days are busy, and some families are busier than others. Most games now have an average game length on the side of the box to help with your selection.
- Ease of use – Is this a game that the family can play right out of the box? Will it be easy for all members of the family to understand?
- Fun factor – You want the game to be fun for all ages!
- Challenge factor– If the game is too easy, the family won’t play it often. The same goes for super-complicated games.
- Skills covered- Is there a particular area you want to work on with your children? Having trouble with math facts? Make sure to find a fantastic math game.
- Longevity – You don’t want to pick a game that the family will outgrow quickly.
- Flexibility – Can the game be played in more than one way? Can it be used as a solitaire, or in groups? Would it work well for homeschool co-ops and classrooms, or is it a one-trick pony?
What this game loving homeschool mom likes about HoliMaths X
When I first heard about HoliMaths X, I had a feeling we would love it. My gut was spot-on.
HoliMaths X delivers on all counts, and here’s why:
Recommended number of players
HoliMaths X is super flexible. Depending on what version of the game you play, you need 1-6 players. In fact, if you combine two decks, you can have a 12 player game- perfect for classrooms or homeschool co-ops!
HoliMaths X is recommended for ages 7 and up, but my math-loving 5- and 6-year-olds played with no problem.
Time to play
Depending on which version you are playing, HoliMaths X can be played in 10 minutes or upwards of 30 minutes.
Ease of use
HoliMaths X is produced in Chile. And while math is a universal language, the current box and included instructions are in Spanish (my kids thought this was awesome, by the way). Instructions for English are available online, along with instructional videos, and our family was able to start playing in minutes. Here is one example:
We have been playing the classic version, which is essentially a “Go Fish” with multiplication tables. My kids learned to play quickly and have not tired of this version yet!
- FUN FACTOR
My children are on a card game kick lately and they fell for this game immediately. In fact, we packed HoliMaths X on a recent trip up north. And just look at my little mathemagician’s face in these photos… his smile says it all:
HoliMaths X offers a point system for children who love to keep score. When I play with my daughter, we don’t keep score. Some kids love competition and some do not– you can easily make this game work for your family.
One thing I love about this game is that it is color-coded. Each times tables has its own color, and these colors are also represented on the “helping cards” (I’ll talk more about those in a minute!). These colors are great for visual learners- they really help kids to see patterns in math. (Our other favorite Kickstarter-fueled math game incorporates color-coding, too, and I’ve witnessed the color-coding help my children to learn!)
The great thing about HoliMath X is that you can customize it to meet the needs of your students. My children are 8, 6, and 5-years-old and we were easily able to play together and each child was appropriately challenged. One thing I really love about HoliMaths X is that each set includes “helping cards” … these are essentially cheat sheets to help your children along the way. Multiplication can be intimidating. (I know I still get anxious when I think about speed drills!) These cards take the fear out of multiplication so that you can focus on the fun… and it helps younger players feel included!
In addition, HoliMaths X offers 10 ways to play. Each version is a different “level” of play. This means that your children will not outgrow this game in a week, but rather it will grow with them:
HoliMath X is available in two different levels. The first level focuses on multiplication tables 1-6:
And the second level works on multiplication tables 7-12:
I love that you can combine both levels to work on all tables. This is a truly flexible card game, which brings me to…
This is not a game that your family will soon outgrow. This is a game that can grow with your children for years.
HoliMaths X has two levels and each level can be played TEN different ways. Not only that but the two levels can be combined.
Practice math through play
One of my goals for the 2016-17 homeschool year is to add more math play to our morning routine. Over the summer, I read a fantastic book that inspired me to make changes to our morning routine for the coming year. This year, I’ve decided to incorporate math play after our morning Coffee and Books.
We have only been playing HoliMaths X for a few weeks, but already it has become a regular in our rotation over here.
I am happy to have discovered HoliMaths X. I just know that this is a game our family will be using for years. In fact, I already consider it part of our homeschool math curricula this year.
Enter to win HoliMaths X!
HoliMaths X is currently on Kickstarter. HoliPlay is also offering a giveaway, which you can enter below. Please note that if you purchase this game through Kickstarter and you end up winning the giveaway, HoliPlay will refund your money.
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I rely heavily on educational games in our homeschool. Read more here:
Now, it’s your turn. Tell me: What is your family’s favorite math game? Share here!
Cait co-hosts The Homeschool Sisters Podcast and is co-founder of Raising Poppies, a community for parents of gifted and twice-exceptional children. Cait is also founder of the Family Book Club at My Little Poppies, a fantastic community of book-loving parents and the Gameschool Community at My Little Poppies, a vibrant community of gameschoolers.
Cait is a contributing writer for Simple Homeschool and GeekMom. Her work has also appeared on The Huffington Post, The Mighty, and Scary Mommy. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram