Age Level: Preschool, Early Elementary
Description: This fun game has players pressing the launcher to send number tiles flying, then matching the number to the appropriate space on his/her game mat. It’s a simple game that’s great for motivating young learners to practice basic math skills. This is one game in a new series of Launch & Match Games released by Lakeshore earlier this year.
Skills & Modifications: This game allows you to teach a wide range of skills with little to no modifications. The launcher is simple to use, though it does require a bit of pressure to get the button all the way.
Number Identification – One way I modify this game is to remove the game mats and use the materials to practice numberidentification. The learner presses the button on the launcher, then names the number that flies out.
Number order/Number line – For one learner, I modified the game by creating a number line like the one pictured below. He pressed the button on the launcher, then placed the number that flew out in the correct space on the number line.
Counting – For another learner, I placed picture cards with different items on them as pictured below. She pressed the button on the launcher, then matched the number to the card showing the amount of the tile.
Addition – This game is designed to practice addition. It is important that all players have mastered addition. Otherwise, the game gets too slow and players begin to lose interest.
Peer Play – This game has been fantastic for peer play because the learners I’ve used it with are so motivated by the launcher. It has helped to increase joint attention during gameplay. It also clearly delineates the beginning and end of each turn.
Pros: I love any game with an aspect of cause and effect. Many of the learners I work with are highly motivated by pushing the button and seeing a number fly out. The materials are also very high quality. Because this is only one game from Lakeshore’s Launch & Match series, you can find a version that meets the unique needs of your learner and still contains the motivating launcher.
Cons: You have to buy a separate launcher for each skill. I wish they sold sets of the wooden game tiles separately, or one complete set of all the Launch & Match math activities.
Ideas for extending the lesson: I’ve had fun incorporating the launcher into other activities with my students. One popular way I’ve used it is to remove the game mats and add two dice to the game. The learner presses the button on the number launcher, then rolls the dice until the numbers on the dice add up to the sum shown on the number tile. You can also play this game with multiple players by giving every player two dice. The first player to roll the sum shown on the number tile gets to push the button next. This helps improve speed with addition.
Cost: $24.99 You should invest in this game if: you are seeking fun ways to practice addition, you are looking for peer play opportunities for a child who is highly motivated by numbers, or you have a learner who is highly motivated by the launcher. To view all of Lakeshore’s Launch & Match games, click here.
ABLLS: K15, R6, R8
VB-MAPP: Math 12