Basketball, Numbers, and Ten Frames, Oh My!

number ball game

** Post Edited!! I have now created all of the signs and forms needed to play this game at a wide variety of levels! You can work on number identification, place value, patterns on the hundreds chart, addition, subtraction, and measurement. This pack has signs you can print as well as a complete set that can be projected on to the SMART board.  Be sure to grab this set today, as it will save you loads of time and let you start playing this popular game right away!**  Number Basketball Game Pack

A few weeks ago I posted about the sight word basketball game I created for my class.  It has been wildly successful, and my kids absolutely love it.  So, as with any good idea, I decided I wanted to get the most out of it that I can.  I altered the game a bit to create a number identification version.  And, since I knew that my kids were comfortable with the game, I also used this as an opportunity to add another level of challenge to it.

Rather than repeat all of the setup instructions here, I suggest you read the sight word game post by clicking on this link.  The setup for the number game is exactly the same, except you label the balls with numbers, rather than words.


Now, to elevate the game I wanted to include ten frames.  We have been working with ten frames to help my students understand that numbers, which are very abstract, actually represent a concrete quantity.  The ten frames have also been invaluable in helping my kids understand the difference between tens and ones.  If you want to read about some of the other work we have done with ten frames, click here.

So, in prepping for this version, I also made a color coded ten frame for each number that appeared on a ball.  Essentially I made one set of ten frames and then simply changed the colors of the dots.  I printed the ten frames on to card stock, laminated them, and added a little magnetic tape on to the back of each card.


For game play, I divided the kids into teams and gave each team their balls and ten frames.  I called out a number, and the team worked first to find the appropriate ball and pitch it into the basket.  Then they were to go back to their team, find the matching ten frame, and put it up on the board (thus the magnetic tape).  Each round ended when every team had thrown and put up their ten frame.

I told the kids that they should concentrate on the ball first, because I was paying attention to which team got their ball in the basket first.  I was not paying attention to the speed with which they placed their ten frame.  That way they had a little more time to work with their team and find the appropriate frame.





When scoring, the team that made the basket first got six points, second got five points, all the way down to one point for the last team.  After awarding points for the balls, I checked the ten frames.  Any team that got the correct ten frame on the board in time got one bonus point.  I used my magnetic whiteboard for the ten frames and my SMARTboard to keep track of the score.



As with any game, our play got better after the first few rounds when the kids got the hang of it.  We played it a second time today, and it was AMAZING!  I like the changes for a few reasons.  First, it certainly required more thinking and application of math skills.  Second, it gave team members something beneficial to do on every turn (not just when it was their throwing turn).  And finally, I loved watching the counting, recounting, discussion, and thinking that went on as the kids worked together to find the correct ten frames.  It was really impressive how most teams ended up with the correct frame, but each round was a process and a discussion.

If you would like to play this game with your kids, or even use the ten frames in a different way, a full pack with the game differentiated for many levels is available here. A free set of ten frames is available  here.  Enjoy!

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