June 17, 2024

Skyjo is a card game that a student introduced to me this year. It quickly became one of my favorites, as well as a favorite of most of my students! This third grade group asked to play it every time we met for weeks, but my middle school groups enjoyed it just as much. I also know adults who play it at home for game night fun! It is now one of my top recommended games for families to buy.

One of the things I like about Skyjo is that it is easy to learn, quick to set up, and played in fast paced rounds. This means we can easily squeeze in a round or two if we just have a few minutes, or the kids can play longer games with multiple rounds. It’s just as fun with 2 players or 8.

The objective of the game is to have the lowest point total once all the cards are flipped. There is a combination of luck and strategy as you choose which cards to flip and exchange. But what I really love is the mental calculations as I noticed most kids are constantly adding and comparing their scores throughout the game!

Players have 12 cards with numbers ranging from -2 to 12. This means they are not only developing strategies for mentally adding lists of numbers, but developing a natural understanding of what it means to add negative numbers! Then as we do final calculations we also compare scores. I use this to emphasize the idea that subtraction means finding the difference between two numbers and can be accomplished by counting up!

Find Skyjo on Amazon here.

See my games archive here for more recommended math games!

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