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Time4Learning Demos

The Drowning Math Game

Our son invented this pool game when he was about nine. He named it. No one actually drowns.

He invented it because he loved to dive for things at the bottom of our pool, and he found the quiet of being under water an undistracting place to do math in his head.

His rules.

Mom says a math problem from the practice “homework” section of a math lesson. The concept has already been learned.

She then throws in a pool-safe toy.

The object is to come up with the toy and the answer to the problem at the same time.

“But what if he can’t figure out the answer?” One little girl frowned as I told about this math-in-the-pool game.

“He gets to come up for air and clarification about the math problem.” I reassured her.

Play until the child is worn out or you’ve run out of math problems. No drowning of children allowed.

He played this game from the time he was learning multiplication tables, through fractions and decimals, and into early stages of algebra even, with problems like (x-2)*(x+3).

Here are some ideas for diving toys.

Swimways Toypedo Bandits ~ These torpedos are great favorites to this day! They glide up to 30 feet before sinking, so kids have a good chance of catching them. Their bright colors make them easy to see under water. Can be used as refills for Swimways Toypedo Blast.
Swimways Avengers Dive Characters ~ If you are an Iron Man fan like I am, this set of three action figures would be fun to rescue with math. Throw in all three figures, and ask to bring up the one for the right answer: if the answer is X, bring up Iron Man. If Y bring up Captain America. If neither answer is right bring up the Hulk. Let your kid make the rules. If playing with several kids, the rule can be to find their own toy, or to just find any of the toys and bring one each to the surface along with the answer.
Pack contains Hulk, Iron Man and Captain America characters
Play action in and out of the pool
Soft and flexible design
Build swimming and diving skills while playing
Princess Dive Sticks ~ For those who would rather rescue princesses. They do sink. They are supposed to sink. You can handicap better swimmers by throwing their toy in a deeper part of the pool, or making a rule they have to bring up two toys to the other’s one. Let your kids figure out how to make the game fair.
Fun Disney characters
Play with them inside or outside of the pool
Soft and flexible design
Great kid party entertainment
Fun to collect
Intex Underwater Swimming/Diving Pool Toy Rings – Assorted Colors ~ For older kids working on harder problems, and can hold their breath longer. You may want to buy several sets of these rings. Throw them all in the pool, and then ask problem like: bring up the number of rings that answer this question…. the double pack is significantly less expensive than two single packs, and you’ll need lots of them when inventing new rules to this drowning game.
Set includes eight different rings: Red, blue, yellow and green (two of each color)
6″ in diameter and brightly colored – making them easy to grab for younger swimmers
Made of soft, flexible material
Rings stand upright on the bottom of the pool
Great for teaching kids how to dive!

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