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Recreational Math for the Classroom

3 Credits

What is the Recreational Math for the Classroom course?

Through this 100% online professional development course, educators will discover how recreational mathematics is real mathematics but presented in a context that makes it fun, interesting and challenging. The regular use of mathematical games throughout the school year can serve to convince students that math can be exciting.

Recreational Math Defined

The term recreational math refers to any game, puzzle or activity that teaches math skills to help participants “win.” The focus is using games to help students understand many of the concepts in mathematics even at a young age. Educators have used popular games such as:

  • Sudoku
  • Brain teasers
  • Monopoly
  • Card games
  • Math humor
  • Simon says
  • Shaving cream equations
  • Hopscotch
  • Twister Dice

What will you learn in Recreational Math for the Classroom?

The Recreational Math for the Classroom course is designed to help K-12 teachers implement recreational mathematics in meaningful ways. Participants will gain a new appreciation of what is available within recreational mathematics and how this can capture the interest and motivation of students who often find mathematics dull and uninteresting. This course will teach educators how to implement effective strategies and interventions that best fit their students’ needs.

Participants in the course will learn to:

  • Read and respond to a selection of materials dealing with recreational mathematics
  • Identify a collection of recreational math activities appropriate for their grade level
  • Teach several activities, evaluating their effectiveness
  • Identify and explain the significant roles of recreational mathematics
  • Locate and utilize the resources available in recreational mathematics
  • Develop strategies and plans for utilizing recreational mathematics.

National Standards

Common Core Standards for Mathematics Mathematical practice English Language Arts National Board for Professional Teaching Standards


"This course provided me with hands-on, recreational math activities that I can implement in my classroom right away. The instructor was prompt in providing feedback, and the forums were a great place to share ideas with colleagues."

- Educator from Ohio


NOTE: This course is applicable towards the Student Engagement Certificate.

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Candi Reimer

As a beginning mathematics teacher at an urban high school, I quickly realized that drawing on student interests and experiences was essential to engaged learning. This insight has guided my work in education as a K-12 instructional coach, a developer of mathematics curriculum, and an instructor of professional development. My courses aim to create space for teachers to gather around relevant ideas and practical experiences as they deepen their knowledge and professional practice. Course topics reflect the concerns and curiosities of practicing teachers, equipping them to directly apply learning to classroom teaching. I value the diverse perspectives that Fresno Pacific University students bring to the learning community, and I hope that participants in my courses will be as inspired as I have been by the ideas and dialogue generated here.