Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Playing games is a favorite activity of our family. You can learn so much as you play, so we often integrate board games into our homeschool. When I was given the opportunity to review Math Sprint – The Mental Math Game from Byron’s Games, I was thrilled. A new game? And one that promoted math? Yes please!
What Is This Product?
Math Sprint is a game to help students practice their basic math facts. It’s designed for kids ages 7 and up, so several of my kids got in on the action over the course of the past several weeks. It’s a game that once they learned how to play, they could pull out and play together. It can accommodate 2-8 players (you can also use teams, though we never did), so it’s one of the games that we can enjoy together as a larger family.
The objective of the game is to get your racer across the finish line. In order to do that, you have to answer mental math problems. As you’re setting up the game, you can customize the types of problems in there based on the skill level of your players. If we had younger kids playing, I opted for the easier cards that had basic addition facts. If just a couple of the older kids played, they got to practice harder math facts, including division and word problems.
In all, there are 258 cards. The problem cards each have two questions on them. There are also wild cards and challenge cards, which added variety to the game play.
How to Play Math Sprint
When your players are all ready, they each get to pick a runner piece. These colorful tokens each have a backstory you can read about. This made it fun to select your piece.
Then, you decide how long of a game you want to play. You can go around the entire track (400 meters, which takes about 30 minutes), or opt for a shorter 200 meter or 100 meter game. The first time we played, we decided to go with the shortest, just to get the hang of it. In their next playing, the kids decided to go for a whole track. Then, they tried the 200. That ended up being the family favorite, so most additional games started at the 200 meter line.
One player is the coach. You can alternate this from player to player, or have one designated coach. If the kids were playing on their own, they took turns coaching. If they wanted me to join them, I typically took the role of coach and kept it. This way I could really direct the right questions to the right kids so it worked out well.
The coach’s job is to pick a card from the deck and tell everyone what the operation is. Then, they say if everyone gets to answer, or only two players (and calls out which two). Finally, the coach listens carefully and decides which player answers correctly first. That person gets to move their piece two spaces forward.
Scattered around the board, you’ll find some physical activities. As each player passes those, they stop and do what it says (hop or do arm circles for instance). This burst of physical activity helps them to better focus on the math – they’re little brain breaks.
The winner is the first person to cross the finish line.
What We Thought of Math Sprint
Most of the kids really enjoyed playing this game. I have one who doesn’t particularly like math, and she wasn’t thrilled to play. But, she decided it was much more fun than the alternative I gave her (worksheets) so even she started having fun with it.
I like that it’s customizable so players of different levels can play. It’s a fun way to practice important math skills, and help your students be able to answer them quickly.
The board games and the pieces are sturdy and well made. They have held up well to a lot of game play so far, and I anticipate that they will continue to do so.
However, I didn’t find the directions to be as helpful as I’d hoped. We had to read them a couple of times to get the hang of it. They weren’t poorly written, but just a bit confusing. I found myself flipping back through as the kids had questions during game play, trying to find the answers.
Other than that, this was a fun game that we’ll continue to pull out in the future. It’s been a fun addition to our homeschool, and I highly recommend it if you have kids who need to practice their math facts.