Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Skip Counting: Speed

The boys love skip counting!  One of Kal-El's works today was to practice reading the labels on the short nine chain backwards and forwards and try to say them by memory. (Check out Me Too in the background loading knobless cylinders into the knobbed-cylinder blocks.) After practicing, he asked to listen to the Schoolhouse rock song about "nine" (my brother-in-law gave us a full collection on cd). You can find a list of all of the Schoolhouse Rock videos plus the lyrics and links to videos of them here:

Schoolhouse Rock

Me Too really likes the song for skip counting fives and I catch him singing it around the house all of the time.  We couldn't just listen to one.  After "Naughty Number Nine" they requested "I Got Six", "My Hero, Zero", and "Ready or Not, Hear I Come" (fives).  After rockin' out to songs about math, it was time for Kal-El to try a few games of "Nine Speed."

We purchased a set of Speed! decks after reading about them over at The Homeschool Den.
Never one to re-do work already done well by someone else, I will refer you back to The Homeschool Den where there is a really nice post that reviews the game, explains the game play, and includes a lot of pictures.

The game set includes a deck to practice skip counting for each number two through nine.  The object is to get rid of all of your cards by laying a card from your hand on top of the card that is face-up by skip counting either forward or backward.

The cards themselves are uncannily "Montessori" and work really well in tandem with bead chain work.  I took a picture of a couple of cards close up so that you can see the actual bead chains depicted on the cards.  The colors, unfortunately, do not match the colors of the Montessori bead chains.

You can watch a game of "Three Speed" in action in this video:

I don't think you will find this game in brick-and-mortar stores yet.You can find it at Amazon.  

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  1. Wow! That is a really cool game!!!!! I think I will have to look into something like that! :) Thanks for sharing! You always have the best ideas!!!!!

  2. Wow!! LOVE. LOVE THAT GAME!! and it's like Montessori!! Thanks, thanks for sharing....I'll look for it!!! Thank you!! GREAT IDEA!!

  3. Stephanie - I'm having a lightbulb moment. I'm Julie (creator of this game).

    A lady in New Zealand recently contacted me about purchasing Speed! for her store. She mentioned she read about it on What did we do all day. Well, I was just reading a post on a yahoo message board (written by you I assume) with your website listed at the bottom. Anyway, I finally put the puzzle together and found your blog.

    Thank you so much for writing about Speed!

    and maybe I can solve one of your mysteries..... The cards are very Montessori because - My daughter attended a Montessori school for two years, my brother attended a Montessori pre-school a long time ago and I attended a school that was called open-classroom. Open-classroom is not Montessori, but has a lot of Montessori features. I love Montessori, but have always been a bit of an outsider. I love the methods, but was unaware of the colors when I invented the game.

    Thanks again and I'm glad I found you.


  4. Julie,

    Hi! So cool that you stopped by to comment. I have a feeling I know just who you were talking to in New Zealand also :)

    My name is NOT Stephanie. Stephanie is someone else who happened to comment on this blog post...she has her own blog elsewhere :)

    That explains about the colors. I always wondered how it was sooo Montessori but in the wrong colors.

  5. Oops - sorry about the name.

    You are also right that Speed! is currently not in any stores... only amazon.com. I would never have guessed that the first store to contact me would be located in New Zealand and not in the United States.

  6. Thanks so much for writing about Speed! last year. I hope you are still having fun playing. I have big news. My husband has been working on an electronic version and today it was released for sale in the Apple iPad App Store. Check it out.



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  8. I absolutely loved playing Speed as a little girl!

    Of course, there was no educational component because we played with playing cards and uno cards, but I love it!

    I used to be a speed master. We had all sorts of additional rules: doubles no triples, you could only have five cards in your hand at a time, you could have unlimited cards in your hand, etc. We played skips, which was multiples of two.

    Thanks for posting about this game! I didn't know it existed and will likely purchase it for use in my classroom when I go back to work!

    I wanted to add to my comment after I was able to view the video. We dealt it differently. We dealt two draw piles outside of the play piles. At any point during the game when neither player could make a play, we would say, "1, 2, 3, flip!" And flip a card simultaneously onto the play pile, and continue playing from there. If a flip was necessary to continue play but the draw pile had been exhausted, we would turn the piles over much in the same manner as done in UNO.

    Just wanted to offer a variation on the game. We were older so we held the cards in our hand, too.

  9. We should try to use interesting methods to teach the small age children because they can easily learn with interesting games, materials etc.
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