With Family Math Night approaching in less than a month all of my Math 221 time has been spent thinking about what needs to be prepared for Family Math Night. Our class will be working with 5th graders of Grand Haven to make this night happen. This week I spent most of my time figuring out ideas/games I can present to the 5th graders when our class meets with them on Wednesday. 

Over the past week I have looked through several math games, trying to find a fun and mathematical game. I looked at the Family Math Night Starter Ideas Google Doc to help come up with an idea. The game that stood out to me the most on the Google Doc was the, "Build an Animal" game. What made me look at this game when first glancing through the page was the fact that it was using animals with math. I personally love animals and I know that most children also love animals. So that led me to look further into the game. 

How to play, "Build an Animal": To play this game you need a die with each different number on the die representing a different animal body part. (Such as 1 being a body, 2 being a head...etc.) Whatever number the student rolls they will look at what animal body part the number represents and take that part from the pile. The student will keep rolling the die until they get all of the body parts to build a complete animal. This game will also be a race to see who can make a whole animal the fastest. 

Math in "Build an Animal": The math behind this game is all about probability. When the student rolls a die there are 6 different possibilities that the student will roll. The probability is 1/6 or 16%. 
On the website, "Math is Fun" I found a good equation of probability:

Probability of an event happening = Number of ways it can happen/Total Number of outcomes

Things to do for preparation: My partner and I need to cut out different animal parts and decided what numbers represent what body part and if we want one number to represent something else such as, "Take a part from another player". We also need to decide what makes an animal a "complete" animal. In general we need to figure out what we want the exact rules of the game to be. 

Reflection: Preparing for Family Math Night is showing me what it takes to be teacher and the work that is needed for making lesson plans or games. This activity is teaching me how to teach others math and I'm sure after the actual event I will have improved my math teaching skills. 

Feedback: Do you have any advice to make this game better? Any rules that should be added? 

Sources: Math is Fun: http://www.mathsisfun.com/data/probability.html
Family Math Night Google Doc: https://docs.google.com/document/d/18XQOUnBqavQHaFOL7b9CDPrmW7NegY9ZgwFB7N1kMLo/edit

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