Donkey Number Bonds

fun number bonds card gameHere's another versatile little number bond Maths game. You don't need many teaching resources, a handful of counters and a pack of number cards.

The game is related to the children's card game 'Donkey' (aka Old Maid). In that game the children have a set of cards each of which has a matching pair except for one (the Donkey card).

In our version all of the players have a set of number cards and they need to find a matching number card that makes 10.

The aim of the game is to find matching pairs of cards that total 10, and not to be left with an 'odd' card; here's how it works.

Everyone has three counters at the beginning of the game - these are points, a point is lost in each game.

You need a set of 0 - 10 number cards. The cards are shuffled and dealt out between the players. The players look at their cards but do not allow anyone else to see them. The person who dealt the cards starts, he looks at his cards searching for pairs that add to 10. If he finds a pair he puts the cards face up on the table.

bonds to 10

Next he holds out his remaining cards in a fan to the person on his right.

This player chooses any card (without looking at it) from the dealers set. Now, she looks at her set of cards, if there is a pair that adds to 10 she places these down on the table...

bonds to 10

...fans the rest of the cards and lets the next person on his right select one.

Play continues like this.
 

At the end of the game there will be only one card left. This is the Donkey card since it has no partner. The person with that card looses a point and must put one of his counters away.

This is the end of the first round. The cards are now shuffled an another player is the dealer. The children continue playing until one of them has used up all of their counters.
 

With the cards 0 - 10, all but one will have a complimentary number to make 10. The 5 has no 'partner' and is the Donkey card. It is interesting to see if children notice that the same number is left each time they play. It is equally interesting to see if they can explain why this happens!

Clearly, this game can be adapted to work with other number bonds. Bonds to 20 work well because there are more cards in play.
 

Some other teaching points to encourage children to think about:
  • Will the game work with number bonds to 5 (using the numbers 0 - 5)?
  • Will it work with bonds to 25 (using 0 - 25)?

When children are used to playing the game, the term 'Donkey number' could be used as a fun way to explore addition properties.

  • With all of the numbers 0 to 6, what is the Donkey number - the one without a partner?
  • What about the numbers 0 to 100?


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12 Comments

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torr.b's picture

This game has worked

This game has worked brilliantly for me in the past. Great wxtension to 2o also.
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torr.b's picture

This game has worked

This game has worked brilliantly for me in the past. Great wxtension to 2o also.
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0 users have voted.
torr.b's picture

This game has worked

This game has worked brilliantly for me in the past. Great wxtension to 2o also.
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KazzaH11's picture

We have a significant number

We have a significant number of beginning teachers at our school and I can't wait t share your reources with them. It's great to have such high quality resources that target the needs of students.
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johdu's picture

Many thanks for your kind

Many thanks for your kind comments. Great to hear you like the resources here so much - we always aim to offer not just a useful teaching resource, but also a little extra in terms of alternative uses and suggested ways of working. Thanks for sharing our site with your colleagues.

John

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felicity susans's picture

 This game  has  worked

 This game  has  worked really well  with  Y3  children finding  number bonds difficult to remember . They had been losing  confidence ( and their liking for maths) and this game gave them back confidence. It was  also good  as it didn't seem too young to them.
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liteinsteins's picture

 My son is 7 and home

 My son is 7 and home educated.  He is not very keen on worksheet type maths but loves card games like donkey and top trumps.  We have done a similar type of game with sight words but this is a really nice way of doing number bonds.  I think that if children can understand number bonds then all of maths becomes easier.  
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johdu's picture

That's great news. Thank you

That's great news. Thank you for your comment. We intend to add more great maths resources suitable for home-educators like yourself in the coming few weeks... so watch this space!
 

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 Great resource, thanks!  How

 Great resource, thanks!  How many players to a game?  In pairs, or more?  
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gailstp's picture

Just what I was looking for.

Just what I was looking for. So simple to get started right away in my classroom.
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 Can't tell you how delighted

 Can't tell you how delighted I am to have found this site! I was originally looking for prac games I could play with my 7 yr old in the hols.Something fresh and fun, that didn't necessarily always involve a computer online game. I am very keen to play the donkey and rocket bonds games with her. I am also a Year 1 teacher and so am doubly thrilled to have found such a fab resource site. Thank you - I will certainly be passing on this great news to both my colleagues and the parents of my new class !
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johdu's picture

Many thanks for your positive

Many thanks for your positive feedback - very good to hear. I hope you continue to find many useful maths resources and lesson ideas here.  
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