teaching resource

Pirate's Plunder - Number Line Subtraction Game

Teach Starter Publishing
Google Slide, PDF | 8 pages | Grades: K - 1

Practice using the jump strategy for subtraction from 20 with an exciting pirate-themed math game.

Pirate’s Plunder! A Subtraction Game for Primary Pirates

Ahoy there, mateys! Are you ready to set sail on a swashbuckling adventure? Toss your students on board and set sail with a pirate-themed game that will put their subtraction skills to the test! Prepare them to count their doubloons, subtract their loot, and outsmart those pesky pirates. Hand out those eyepatches and hoist the Jolly Roger. It’s time for them to show off their subtraction skills on the high seas!

Practice Subtraction on a Number Line, But Watch Out for Pirates!

This game allows students to practice using the jump strategy for solving subtraction problems up to twenty. This is ideal to use in small groups of 4 during math centers.

How to Play Our Subtraction Game

  1. Each player will need a game board and a set of colored counters. 
  2.  Shuffle all cards and place them face down in a stack on the playing surface. 
  3.  Player 1 draws a card and uses the number line to solve the problem. They cover that number on their game board if their answer is correct. Set the card aside.
  4. The game continues in the same manner for other players. If a student draws a pirate card, it means the next “pirate” in playing order gets to raid that student’s board, remove one counter, and add it to their own game board. 
  5. If a student draws a treasure chest card, they get to raid the board of the next player in line. They can take one counter from that student’s board to add to their board. 
  6. If a student draws a problem they already have covered on their board, they can choose any crewmate playing the game to give the point to.
  7. Play continues until all of the playing cards have been used. 
  8. The student with the most counters on their board is the winner!

Print the gameboards and question cards on cardstock. Print one number line template for each player. To save paper, place the number lines in a dry-erase pocket.

Download and Print Your Math Game

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This resource was created by Cassandra Friesen, a teacher in Colorado and Teach Starter Collaborator.


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