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How We Play Math Works

Anyone can succeed in math. The idea that some people are naturally good at math and others are naturally bad at math is silly. Given excellent instruction, support and materials any child can thrive at math and love it, too!

Math is not merely numbers on a sheet of paper. Math is beautiful and visual, fun and inviting, challenging and rewarding. Math is history, literature, science and geography. Mathematicians of the past and present are innovators and heroes! We want YOUR children to take their places among the great mathematicians of the world.

Daily Coursework

Students should log into their student dashboards at least four days each week, where they will:

Videos are a 3-10 minute animated explanation of a concept.

Daily 5-10 minute game practices and reinforces the concepts learned that day. Math is all about patterns and sometimes if we just see one example of a pattern, we have an incorrect idea of how it works. We correct our own misconceptions by applying the pattern repeatedly (practice) and seeing whether our results are correct. Games allow students to practice a concept several times with immediate feedback so they can correct any misconceptions before they go very far. The games include arcade-style games, drag and drop games, matching games, card games and more.

The physical act of writing is essential to learning and especially retention. It’s importance cannot be overstated. Each lesson includes a written assignment, which is usually 2 pages of full-color riddles, number mazes, puzzles and fun stuff alongside the essential, basic math practice problems.

For your convenience, We Play Math sells pre-printed, consumable workbooks on Amazon at the cheapest price Amazon will allow. However, in case you know of a printer that can print and bind the workbook for cheaper than Amazon, we also provide a link to the entire printable file. Each lesson also includes links to that days worksheets (they are exactly the same as the workbook) for those who prefer to print as they go or in case of lost workbooks (we get it, we’re parents, too). We just want it to be as convenient and easy for you as possible, while keeping great learning affordable.

While the games are auto-graded by the software, the daily written assignments are checked by parents. For maximum learning, we suggest checking assignments each day and having your child correct any incorrect problems right away.

These are optional, but very beneficial for a thorough and deep understanding of each concept. Enrichment activities are intended to build your child’s number sense, love for numbers, ability to visualize math concepts, and excitement about math. The activities include hands-on math labs, math conversations, math jokes and riddles, math puzzles and pattern seeking activities. We’ll talk about ways in which math and Computer Science meet or overlap, like Data Science and Machine Learning, ways in which math is used in the sciences, and we encourage dinner table math conversations. We also challenge students by asking them open-ended questions and by providing hands-on, multi-sensory games to play with math manipulatives. We hope to enrich your child’s experience with math so greatly that your child never even wonders what math has to do with real life.

Some lessons have multiple enrichment activities and some days have just one. All of them are optional. Just choose the ones that look the most interesting and/or beneficial to your child. Most are simple, easy, print and play games, a few are DIY manipulatives and will require minimal craft supplies (for example, kids make a clock when learning the parts of the clock, which they use in later lessons, and they will need a paper plate and a brad). Any supplies required (they are minimal and things you probably already have around your house) are notated in the lists of necessary supplies at the beginning of each course. I also typically provide reminders a few lessons prior to when you will need any supplies. They are minimal, though — I’m also a homeschool mom with a large family and I get not wanting to find everyone’s shoes for a quick trip to Walmart because shoes and Walmart, never quick — no thanks!


We Play Math is spiral based, meaning that concepts are introduced and then revisited over and over, more deeply each time, in order to familiarize students thoroughly with each concept and also promote retention. We feel a conceptual understanding is critical to student understanding and always introduce new topics conceptually before providing students with the procedure, or algorithm, with which to solve problems.

Rote memorization and/or mechanically following algorithms doesn’t lead to true understanding. We ensure conceptual mastery through a combination of multi-sensory learning techniques. We believe that math requires a great deal of practice in order to gain the necessary fluency (math is a language) and a profound number sense. We love that arcade-style math games can provide much of the skill practice required, but we also believe that the importance of pencil and paper and the physical act of writing should not be overlooked. We believe that a blend of the two is ideal.

We Play Math also believes, wholeheartedly, that parental involvement is key to student success. As homeschool parents ourselves, we understand that parents consistently juggle five million roles and that you might not be able to participate in your child’s education as much as you’d like. For this reason, we’ve designed our curriculum so that students can work as independently as possible, but we hope that parents will involve themselves as much as they are able. Enrichment activities are the perfect place for parents and family members to get involved.

We have provided printable, offline games (in the Enrichment Activities section of each lesson) in addition to online games in each lesson and in the Math Arcade. I’ve watched my own children make deeper connections when playing our math games offline with family members, as opposed to playing them online against the computer. This is just something to keep in mind as your child progresses through our curriculum, especially if you see signs of your child struggling. We work hard to teach students learn how to think by building critical thinking and problem-solving skills, which will enable your children to succeed in life as well as math.

We Play Math also provides:

Math game

Live Learning

Weekly Live Learning Labs are optional. After registration, you will be given a link to a weekly meeting with the other kids in your child’s level for live instruction. The meetings are held in and Eclassroom on our site. The math tutor in charge of your child’s class will work problems, interactively with the students, on the whiteboard, allowing the students to ask questions. Tutors will work the problems student suggest, because it’s likely that many students struggle with the same problems. Think of these live learning labs as a drop-in tutoring session at a set time each week. Your child can submit problems to the tutor in advance of the class meeting, or during the meeting. If your child is humming along happily, thoroughly understanding all of the concepts, there’s no need to attend the weekly live learning lab, but if your child is having trouble with a concept, feel free to drop into the lab and work with a tutor.

math games

Math Arcade

Math requires a LOT of practice in order to attain fluency, just like any other language. Students will never be good at manipulating numbers without being incredibly familiar with them, forwards and backwards, inside and out. Math games are fun ways to gain that familiarity and practice facts without it seeming like drill (and kill). Math games are the solution to whining and nagging! Kids who love math are confident in their abilities and kids who are confident love math. Students may visit the math arcade to play anytime. The arcade is the best place to drill arithmetic facts (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division). The arcade isn’t part of any lesson, please just use it in addition to your child’s daily lessons.

math games

Math Labs

Math Labs occasionally take the place of a lesson and are interspersed throughout each level, about 2 per level. They are the ideal place in which to present math concepts visually and allow students to work creatively to solidify connections between ideas and build number sense. Math Labs encourage experimentation and collaboration. They are where We Play Math students experiment, explore patterns, ask questions, collaborate and explore ideas with puzzles, visuals, multi-sensory tools, stories and visuals.

Euler Math Mysteries

Math Mysteries

Learning about the history of numbers and how measurement became standardized makes math so much richer and more applicable to their own daily lives. We’ll explore the lives, inventions, contributions, discoveries and achievements of many of the world’s greatest mathematicians from Archimedes to Zeno using videos, lectures, stories and multi-sensory projects designed to inspire and motivate students to make discoveries of their own. I hope that mathematics will become more approachable as we learn about the people behind the discoveries. Each math level includes about 2 Math Mysteries in place of a lesson.


Private Tutoring

Nothing is more frustrating than being stuck on a concept and unable to move forward.  Because concepts continually build on previously learned concepts, a foundational misunderstanding can cause an array of problems for as long as it takes to get the misunderstanding corrected (which is one of the many benefits of daily math games practice). That’s why it’s critical that missed problems on assignments are corrected daily, giving students the chance to correct any misunderstandings, before proceeding with the next day’s assignment and potentially missing any problems based on the same concept.

We have a couple of solutions to this problem. First, the daily games help students correct misconceptions before they even begin the daily worksheets. Next, in the upper grades our answer keys contain solutions rather than just answers. Many problems are also linked to video solutions, so students can see the entire problem worked and hear the thought process of an instructor, rather than just see a few lines of it, like in the solution. But there are still times when students need more personalized, individualized help.

That’s why we offer tutoring. We never want our students to feel stuck!

Students and tutors will meet in an Eclassroom on our site. A phone with a camera or a laptop video camera will be required. Our tutors are all highly trained and background-checked, but please instruct your child about internet safety and/or attend the tutoring session with your child. Parents are always welcome and encouraged to participate alongside your child! We want to be your partner in your child’s education, so we want you to see what and how we work with your child.

Our Tutors & Instructors are Parent Partners as well as Math Experts

Our tutors aren’t just gifted teachers, with the special ability to connect with children. They also have an exceptional understanding of math principles so they can teach in a simple, concise way. They are dedicated to continually refining and advancing their teaching methods so they can eliminate overwhelm and build confidence and a love of learning in their students.

The very best thing about We Play Math tutors is that they recognize that they are your partners. Parents are the very best, most influential teachers in their children’s lives. Our tutors want to be your partners. They want to show you how to best work with your children to build math confidence and enjoyment. They want to work alongside you. They realize that it’s tough to teach a subject in which you feel inadequate yourself and that you don’t want to pass any of your own negative feelings about math, and they can show YOU how to accomplish that with an assessment-based, personalized, individualized learning plan for your child.

We Play Math is so much more than just a curriculum from which to learn math. It’s a method for creating math maniacs!