My Let’s Play Math Book(s)

photo by goXunuReviews via Flickr

photo by goXunuReviews via Flickr

Are you a homeschooler? Are you happy with your current curriculum, or would you like to break out of the textbook mold and explore math through “living” books and activities? Whether you hope to replace your math program or just to supplement it, I can show you ways to turn math into a learning adventure for the whole family. Your children will build a stronger foundation of understanding when you teach math as a game, playing with ideas.

This blog originally grew out of my books, and now it’s coming full circle: New, expanded e-book editions of my long-out-of-print books are ripening on the vine, growing out of the blog. I’m hoping that I can finish at least a couple of the books by mid-summer at least one book this year, but things always take longer than I think they should. If you want to be notified as soon as they are available, please subscribe to my blog.

Now Available


Let’s Play Math: How Homeschooling Families Can Learn Math Together, and Enjoy It!

Discover new ways to explore math as a family adventure. True mathematical thinking involves the same creative reasoning that children use to solve puzzles. Introduce your children to the “Aha!” factor, the thrill of solving a challenging puzzle, and build thinking skills with toys, games, and library books. Find out how to choose math manipulatives, or make your own, and learn how to tackle story problems with confidence. Let’s Play Math will give you a wealth of motivating, hands-on ideas for teaching home school math.

Reviews of Let’s Play Math

Combined with all the linked resources, this book is going to transform how I teach my kids maths. No more dabbling in “real maths” but then running back to the workbooks when anxiety strikes — with this approach I can teach my kids to think like mathematicians without worrying about leaving gaps.

My favourite section of the book is “One Week of Real Mathematics”, which contains examples of what one week’s worth of math playtime might look like. I love having this starting point to show me what a balanced “maths diet” might look like.

I knew the well-travelled road (maths curricula) wasn’t for us, but I lacked confidence in my ability to guide my children through uncharted territory. Let’s Play Math is the map and the guidebook I’ve been looking for. With it in my hand I can’t wait to take my children by the hand and head off to explore the wonderful world of maths.

— Lula B
Navigating By Joy

This book is a creative and inspiring challenge to the way maths is usually taught in school. It is packed full of ideas and resources to help children (and definitely adults too!) develop their learning about the art of numbers. In a culture where maths anxiety is now a diagnosable problem, this book shows the way to maths joy.

J. Mcandrews

This book will change the way you look at math forever … Let’s Play Math challenges homeschooling parents to teach their kids to ‘think like mathematicians’ and use their problem solving skills to really understand concepts rather than just memorize processes … This is definitely a must-read e-book for all homeschoolers!

Learners in Bloom

I love math, but had forgotten why I developed a love for math in the first place. This book … shows us how we can ignite this fire in our own children.


I loved how this book reframes our concepts of Math … helps parents understand what Math really is about, what fun there is in it … games and kinds of behavior they can adopt to develop a Math sense in their children.

Rafael Falcón

Coming Soon (I Hope!)

And here are the titles I’m still working on, in tentative order of publication:

Let’s Play Algebra:
Hands-On Games and Activities for Homeschoolers of All Ages

Children can begin to learn pre-algebra skills in preschool, and elementary students can master the first stages of algebra through hands-on exploration. Teenagers will find out how to multiply binomials and gain insight into the history of Greek geometric algebra. Step-by-step instructions and examples take you from solving simple equations to factoring quadratic polynomials.

Multiplication Ninja:
How to Master the Times Table Without (Much) Memorization

When their children struggle with multiplication, many parents resort to flashcards, worksheets, or race-the-clock computer games. Denise Gaskins recommends a different approach: Challenge your student to a joint experiment in mental math. This book will show you how to use the world’s oldest interactive game — conversation — to explore multiplication patterns and build pre-algebra skills while memorizing as little as possible.

Word Problems from Literature:
Creative Story Problems Solved with Word Algebra and Bar Diagrams

Do your children struggle with word problems in math? Featuring problems from Mr. Popper’s Penguins, The Hobbit, and other classics, this book will teach you how to use two powerful tools for solving story problems: word algebra and bar diagrams.

Math You Can Play:
Games That Build Your Child’s Number Skills

Forget flashcards and worksheets. Your children can practice their math facts by playing cards. Beginners will enjoy simple addition and place value games, while more advanced students will be challenged to master fractions and negative numbers.
[This book is completely new, though several of the games have appeared on my blog. It had originally been planned as the fifth book in my earlier how-to-teach-homeschool-math series, but that first self-publishing experiment ended after book four.]

More Math You Can Play:
Games That Build Your Child’s Logical Thinking Skills

Strategy games combine a relief from tedious textbook work with the adventure of creatively logical reasoning. When children play strategy games, they learn to enjoy the challenge of thinking hard. Introduce your family to a variety of games you can enjoy at home or in the car.

Be a Homeschool Math Maven:
Master the Tough Topics of Elementary and Middle School Math

If teaching fractions makes you frantic and you are paranoid about percents, you are not alone. “Math monsters” are those scary topics of textbook arithmetic, the things that go thump! in the mind. Find out how to use hands-on games and manipulatives to teach the real killers of elementary and middle school math.

Praise for the Original Editions

The original (much smaller) editions of my books were published back in the late 1990′s. Here are some of the comments they inspired…

“Each book is like a visit from a veteran homeschooling mom. Informal and easy to read, these small volumes are packed with helpful tips and ideas for new and experienced homeschoolers.”

Home Education Magazine

“Denise Gaskins gives you scores of simple ideas that make math relevant, understandable, and fun…ever-so-practical…”

Homeschooling Today

“I really like your products. You have kept them simple, easy to understand, and very helpful.”

Llewellyn B. Davis, The Elijah Company

“Here’s how to break out of the textbook mold and keep your kids enthused about mathematics.”

Debra Bell

“These are great ideas to encourage math in our kids’ lives. What fun!”

— Rebecca, homeschooling mom

“Thank you for the assistance these books have been to me as a first year, novice homeschooler. I hope new books will be forthcoming!”

— Maureen, homeschooling mom

“I was an honor student in education at the University of Illinois, but I never learned how to teach math. Thank you for your clear and motivating guides.”

Jena, homeschooling mom

“I like math!”

— 10-year-old homeschooler

Have you and your students enjoyed a project, game, or handout from my blog? If you would like to say “Thank you,” then consider buying yourself that book you’ve been meaning to read through one of the links on my bookshelf pages…

Or buy me a cup of coffee. Click here to make a donation via Paypal: Donate

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7 comments on “My Let’s Play Math Book(s)

  1. Pingback: How Can I Teach Math If I Don’t Understand It? « Let's Play Math!

  2. Pingback: Mathematicians Ask Questions « Let's Play Math!

  3. Pingback: Mathematicians Love to Play « Let's Play Math!

  4. Pingback: Algebra: The Search for Pirate Treasure | Let's Play Math!

  5. Pingback: My Ebook: Kindle & Smashwords Updates Available | Let's Play Math!

  6. Pingback: Homeschooling High School Math | Let's Play Math!

  7. I have been looking for a Mathematics book that I could recommend to my kindergarten class students. I think this book is going to play the role. Thanks :)

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