Let’s Rock and Roll!

Practicing reading and writing decimal numbers can be a bit monotonous. So, why not spice it up with some dice?

20140512-165523.jpgOne of the games I learned from Jane Felling’s Power Play session at NCTM Baltimore was called “Rock and Roll.” This game (also perfect for those few extra minutes at the end of class) reviews naming numbers, place value and comparing numbers. Players shake and roll out a given number of dice before quickly arranging them to form the greatest number possible.  When a player has created the greatest number he places his hands on his head and shouts, “Rock and Roll!”

Players then read their numbers aloud, with the first player to shout “Rock and Roll!” scoring 1 point (or was it 5?). The player with the larger of the two numbers also scores 1 point (or was it 5?). But, to earn the points, a comparative statement must be made (i.e. four hundred thirty-four is larger than one hundred fifty-five). Each player then writes his or her number on a recording sheet in both its standard and expanded form.

Though my 5th grade advanced students previously played this game back in October with whole numbers, today we played with decimal numbers. Each player used three 0-9 dice (though spotted dice would work, too!) and arranged them to form a decimal number to thousandths.

This game is simple to differentiate! Variations include:

  • Adjusting the number of dice to increase or decrease the values of the numbers.
  • Arranging the dice to make the smallest number possible, or if playing with 3 players (because classes don’t only come in even numbers) a number that might be in between the other two numbers.

Adrienne 🙂




About shlager

I'm a teacher and rookie math coach who loves designing tasks to motivate, engage, and challenge, a mom to 4 yummy kids, and wife to a hockey lover. Happiness is getting everything organized!
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