Game ideas for understanding place value

For all of these games every player has a Duck Decimal Point card

Biggest/Largest Dash

Decide on the size of the numbers at the start of the game. (2 digit/3 digit or numbers with decimals places etc.) – If you are practising with whole numbers then the duck decimal point card is always placed at the end of the number.

For each turn decide whether the smallest or largest number will win.

Shuffle and deal out the required number of cards to each player, face down. On Go everyone makes the biggest or smallest number they can as quickly as possible.

First player to finish gets a point (but only if they have made the biggest/smallest possible number with their cards)

Player with biggest/smallest number overall also gets a point.

Play for set number of rounds or until a player has reached a set number of points.

Place Value Top Trumps

This game is best played with numbers with 3 or more digits.

Decide on the position of the decimal point card so that everyone is making numbers with the same columns.

Shuffle and deal out correct number of cards to each player who re-arranges them in order to make their number, which they hide under a piece of paper.

Players take it in turns to call a column and whether it is highest/lowest value to win. The player who has the highest/lowest digit in that column wins all the cards. When all columns have been played, new cards are dealt.

Winner has the most cards after set number of rounds.


One player decides the target number each round.

Shuffle the cards and deal to each player, 1 more than the number of digits in the target number. (i.e. target 43.6 – deal 4 cards)
First player can either put down a number that is bigger than the target or collect another a card from the stack. If they put a number down they replace the same number of cards from the stack.
Play moves to the next person.
When the cards have all gone from the stack, players discard un-used cards.

Player with most numbers greater than the target gets one point; player with number nearest to target number also get one point.

Winner is first person to get a set number of points.

Mind Reader

One player makes a number using an agreed number of cards and hides it from the other players - (Start with just 2 cards and increase by 1 each round if appropriate)

The other players take it in turns to ask 2 questions to try and help them work out what the number is. The player can only answer yes or no to any question.
After their two questions, each player can then have a go at guessing the number.

Question ideas:
Is the ones/tens/tenths digit bigger/smaller than?
Does the number have any decimal places?
Are any of the digits the same?
Is the smallest digit bigger than?

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