Thursday, May 23, 2024


by Mark Warner
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Ages: 7-11

To play Bingo, you will need a set of Bingo cards (enough for one child each) and some counters / buttons (approx. 9 each). Although the initial creation of all of the cards may be time-consuming, once they have been made, they can be used again and again.

The Bingo cards can be made by yourself or the children using pieces of A4 card. Each A4 sheet should be split into four rectangles, with 9 numbers in each rectangle (ranging from 1 to 50), as in the picture on the right. The cards should then be cut out and it might be a good ideas to laminate them so that they will last for even longer.

A set of 32 Bingo cards (in PDF) can be found below. Simply print them onto card, and they’re ready to use! A tick list is also available for you to mark off the numbers which have been called.

Once you have the cards and the counters, the class can play. The difference between this Bingo game and normal Bingo is that in this game, the teacher calls out the numbers in the form of sums.

So instead of saying “two little ducks” (i.e. 22), you could say, “What is 11 x 2?” The children can then work out the sum and cover the number 22 if they have it on their card. When a child has all of the numbers on their card, they should BINGO! and win the game.

This activity can be differentiated by having different sets of cards. One set of cards with numbers ranging from one to ten could be used for very young children, while children at the top end of Key Stage 2 could have cards with numbers going up into the thousands and beyond.

Jackie Lester has also pointed out the following:

You don’t always need to have bingo cards – just write up (say) 12 numbers on the board and have a hand-held copy for the caller (to mark off the numbers used). Tell the children to choose (say) 6 of the numbers which they write on a piece of paper or in their draft books.

Devise ways to thwart cheats! My children hold up their papers with a grid of numbers showing for me and the other children to see.

Then play the game as usual, marking off the numbers you’ve used on your hand-held (hidden) copy. The children must also mark off their numbers on their grids. I use this as a mental starter, especially for learning tables – so all the numbers will be in (say) a couple of multiplication tables, and the pace is quite brisk. This game allows less speedy mathematicians a chance to win against the best, so I find that everyone is keen to take part.

A variation contributed by Miriam Tilley…

Word bingo – I made a set of boards and words based on the first 100 keywords 15 years ago, and it is brilliant for odd moments – a child can be the ‘caller’ – the first line gets a chew – full house a lolly!

Another variation, contributed by Erin Muir…

Bingo with a Twist – Each student has a piece of paper with an empty bingo grid. The teacher writes 20-25 words on the board (I use words from a topic we’ve been studying). The students choose 9 words and write them on the grid. The teacher calls out words, and the students check them off; once they have crossed off all their words, they yell… BINGO! My students LOVE this game!! Good luck!

Another variation, contributed by Erin Cheung…

Name Bingo – This is particularly good at the start of the school year when learning names. Also encourages kids to branch out of their friendship groups (initially, girls will only write girls’ names, and boys will only write boys’ names, but they quickly learn that they need a good mix!).


Bingo Cards

Bingo Cards

Download File

Bingo Tick List

Bingo Tick List

Download File

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