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5 Of The Best Maths Games To Play Online For Key Stage 4

Give students a break from the books and let them loose online with these interactive puzzlers

  • 5 Of The Best Maths Games To Play Online For Key Stage 4

Thankfully, the days of working through 100 variations of the same mathematical question seem to be over.

While for some this practice may have embedded various operations in their brain forever, it almost definitely sucked the fun out of the subject almost entirely.

Happy learners are engaged learners, and solving number problems should always a treat (except in the above example). So here are five of the best online games for upper secondary students to practise their maths either on their own or against a buddy.

1. Algebra Meltdown

Linear Equations and Number Machines

Solve linear equations to guide atoms through the reactor. But don’t keep the scientists waiting too long or they blow their tops! It’s the ultimate nuclear test of your maths skills!

As the new controller of the mighty Nuclear Generator, your job is to serve scientists waiting at the Generator’s outlets. Each scientist needs a certain atom, which you create by solving linear equations and then guiding ‘raw’ atoms through the Generator’s maze of machines and tubes.

It starts off with simple addition, before moving on to multiplication, then the equations start to get even trickier.

It’s great fun. Give it a go here.


2. Four Colour Theorem

The Four Colour Theorem states that it will take no more than four different colours to colour a map or similar diagram so that no two regions sharing a border are coloured in the same colour.

The first statement of the Four Colour Theorem appeared in 1852 but surprisingly it wasn’t until 1976 that it was proved with the aid of a computer.

Can your students show logical mathematical reasoning to figure out a way to colour these shapes? There’s a rectangle, a squiggle, a polygon and even a state map of the USA.

Try it out here.


3. Algebra Four

This one comes from a site in the US, so you’ll have to make your peace with reading the word ‘math’ rather ‘maths’ now. Although one benefit of this particular Americanism is that it has led to an excellent meme that parodies awareness campaign posters for a similar-sounding drug popularised (if that’s the right term) in Breaking Bad:

It’s basically an interactive game of Connect 4, except you aren’t automatically given your turn, you have to earn it by answering algebraic equations against the clock. You can alter the type of questions asked and the amount of time you get to answer so it’s easily differentiated for each pair of learners.

Get connecting here.


4. White Box

This interactive NRICH activity is a prism-like where the titular white box contains a number of filled triangles (you can choose how many to increase/decrease the difficulty). Your challenge is to find the locations of those filled triangles in the grid by firing rays into the box to see where they come out.

Some rays will pass straight through the box but some will be deflected by the filled triangles. Test your ideas on the hypothesis window and see how quickly you can work out where the filled triangles are.

The fewer rays you use, the better you’ve done.

Click here to try it for yourself.


5. Numerate

This two-player game works very similarly to a well-known letter-based board game that rhymes with ‘Rabble’. You do have to input your scores manually, and players must check each other’s equations to make sure they work, but that just adds more maths to an already fun endeavour.

Plus, in this one, no one can play words like ‘xu’ and pretend they knew it was a thing when really they’re just trying to jettison difficult letters at the end of the game.

Start equating here.

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