Jun 12, 2015

Place Value Maths Game. Cows and Bulls

This simple little place value number game is a favourite of Maddie's (aged 6) at school and at home. 

Use it to practice recognising numbers, writing numbers and place value, along with problem solving

You can play with two or more people and it is great as a whole class game on the whiteboard (with teacher vs students) or just in pairs (parent and child/two children).

You can use this activity for practicing two digit numbers (with tens and ones), three digit numbers (hundreds, tens and ones), four digit numbers (thousands, hundreds, tens and ones) and so on.

For the first example we use a three digit number as that is the level we're currently working on.

How to play:

  • One player secretly chooses a number and writes it on a piece of paper, showing no-one. They then draw lines indicating the amount of digits in their secret number for the other player/s to try and guess.

  • Children then try to guess the number.

    Each guess is written down on the lines and either a C, B or X is written underneath each digit.
    "C" (cows) means that that digit is correct but it is in the wrong place.
    "B" (bulls/bullseye) means the digit is correct and it's in the right place.
    "X" means the digit is incorrect and not used within the number at all.

  • Children continue to make guesses, using the knowledge they learn of the digits and their position (and therefore value) in the number until they get a Bullseye! (All the digits are in the correct position and the secret number has been revealed!)


Here is an example game played with 3 digits. For our example, I have chosen the secret number, "217"

The 3 lines above represent the 3 digits in the number, 217.

Her first guess was 105 (which I asked her to say as a whole number, One hundred and five). Write the guess down on the lines.

Underneath each digit, write a B, C or X according to the rules above. She got a CXX as the secret number does contain a "1" but not in that place, and there is not a "0" or "5" in the secret number.

They then guess again. (Knowing this time that there has to be a 1 in either the tens or ones column). The next guess was, "Three hundred and nineteen" 

Hooray. The 1 gets a B as it's in the right place. There are no 3's or 9's in the secret number though.

When writing the next line for the next guess, move the known number down.

Next guess.

2 Bulls! So close to a bullseye!

Remember to look at the past numbers you've already guessed and which numbers you're yet to try. The next guess was a lucky one. 217, bullseye!

Here is another example with a 2 digit number. The secret number in this game was "41"

Bullseye! 41!

Don't forget to swap over turns so that each player has a go at writing the numbers as well as getting to lead the game. There is lots of learning on both sides!

Games are fun and when children are having fun, they are more open to learning. As you can see by the pics above, Maddie and I always have a good time playing this game. 

She was actually sick this day and having a day off school and it was the first time she was happy and excited in the day. 

She especially loves it when I'm struggling to get the number. She did attempt to get us to play with a 1 digit number (you could only use X and B for that) but discovered it wasn't quite so fun or interesting.

Here are some more ideas for working on two or three (or more) digit numbers:

Happy playing,
Debs :)

Look where else we are. Are you following along? :)


  1. The post is written in very a good manner and it contains many useful information for me. Thank you very useful information admin, and pardon me permission to share articles here may help :

    risa herbal
    cara menghilangkan benjolan
    toko obat herbal sapnudin
    sehat dan cantik alami
    khasiat obat herbal
    cara menghilangkan bekas jerawat

    1. Lucknow Escorts or Lucknow Call Girls

      Want to enjoy with Goa Escorts, find out best Goa Call Girls.
      Call us and ask for the female model escorts according to your desires with our support team.
      Our escorts services make sure the customer becomes fully satisfied with our services. We Provide Well Educated High Class Escorts Services.
      Here you can find different types of models, housewife, airhostess or celebrity, actress etc.
      you can also hire according to city wise.

  2. Taldeen Saudi Arabia. Taldeen is a plastic solutions company in Saudi Arabia. We will producing plastic pipes, water tanks, handing products such as plastic crates and plastic pallets. So, visit the website for more informations about taldeen plastic manufacturing company

  3. Pjakam is a best website for food recipes and kerala style food report. If you need the tasty kerala food recipes and images, visit the pajakam website.
    Pajakam - Malayalam Cooking Recipes

  4. BBA Aviation is one of the best Management Course in recent times. You can click the below link for more information about BBA Aviation of the Christian College, Bangalore. If you are looking to study BBA Aviation in Bangalore. It is the best option. We have best facility in the same field.
    BBA Aviation colleges in Bangalore
    BBA in Aviation colleges in Bangalore

  5. Hi…this is Abhinav here, from few months I am visiting and following you. What I really like about you is that your writing style. Please keep making such as information for us. Top CA firms in India, Top CA in India.

  6. Thanks for sharing. I hope it will be helpful for too many people that are searching for this topic.
    g switch 3

  7. It's fun to play with two or more people and can be played as a whole class game on the Buy Coursework UK
    whiteboard (teacher vs students) or just in pairs (parent and child/two children).

  8. Your Article is so good and readble thanx for sahring this content. The sooner you will seek the help of a Sexologist in Delhi the faster you will start seeing the results. sexologist in Delhi is something that you certainly need. He has registered himself in the list of the top reputed sexologist. You have got it here! He is an honorable name in the industry of sexologist treatment and best sexologist in Delhi or top sexologist in Faridabad.

  9. The final fantasy XIV game is loved by a lot of gaming followers, plus they can implement a trustworthy site titled MMOGAH to obtain the buy ffxiv gil within the game. Much better is to click here or check out our authorized website to know more related to ffxiv gil.

  10. Securityx Our specialists are merely a call away to tailor our cyber security
    solutions to fit your requirements.

  11. Being a leading web and app development platform, we provide optimal results by establishing a strong brand image across major search engines. shopify app development

  12. time tracking software unique is that it was built to solve our own challenges of tracking work hours.

  13. Really enjoyed reading your blog.It is highly informative and builds great interest for the readers. For the people like us your blogs helps to get ideal information and knowledge. Thanks for providing such blogs. bengals starter jacket

  14. Great article! All the articles you have, they enjoy reading and learning a lot. Your article is very helpful for me. I hope you will continue to write such good articles as well. Cleveland Indians Jacket

  15. Fashion is the thing that you make it - The primary thing you need to comprehend about fashion is that it is just what you make it, that's it. Loki Variant Jacket

  16. You make so many great points here that I read your article a couple of times. Your views are in accordance with my own for the most part. This is great content for your readers. Feel free to visit my website; 바카라사이트탑

  17. I blog often and I seriously appreciate your information. Your article has really peaked my interest. I will bookmark your blog and keep checking for new information about once per week. Feel free to visit my website; 스포츠토토존

  18. Nice blog and absolutely outstanding. You can do something much better but i still say this perfect.Keep trying for the best 바카라사이트비즈

  19. Aw, this was an exceptionally good post. Taking the time and actual effort to create a really good article.. but what can I say.. I put things off a whole lot and never manage to get anything done. 사설토토

  20. Excellent post however , I was wondering if you could write a little more on this topic? I'd be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit more. 파워볼

  21. I like this game because all the parents and teachers can easily teach the kids about Maths. Maths is not an easy subject for the students, and now this game will be the best source for the students in learning questions about Maths. Buy Essay Online

  22. I think your website has a lot of useful knowledge. I'm so thankful for this website.
    I hope that you continue to share a lot of knowledge.
    This is my website.

  23. It’s really a nice and useful piece of information. I’m glad that you shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us up to date like this. sportstototv Thanks for sharing. 스포츠토토

  24. Positive site, where did u think of the data on this posting? I'm satisfied I found it however, sick be inquiring soon to figure out what extra posts you incorporate. 먹튀검증

  25. Everything that I need to know I found in your valuable content. Thank you for sharing such an amazing piece. Keep sharing such informative content in future. I’ll be waiting for your new articles.

  26. "Pizzeria is currently running a promotion. Starting with their Ramzan bargain, there are three sizes of pizzas to choose from, ranging from 10 inches to 20 inches. The package includes two pizzas and two sauces and costs between Rs 1399 to Rs 3499. Another fantastic offer is a flat 30% discount on the full menu (excluding specials) if you go to their website and place your order online. There's also a Thursday slice special, so place your order immediately! online pizza order in karachi
    Location: karachi, Pakistan
    Phone Orders: (021) 111 981 111
    Email Orders:
    WhatsApp: +92 311 1981111"

  27. If you love to wear action movies and games outfits so must check the top 5 superb Cosplay Jackets which gives you a killer and stunning look on this cosplay festival.

  28. I think I will also motivated by you and think about more thoughts. สมัครสมาชิก 789bet

  29. Thank You Very Much For This Wonderful Blog. I Really Enjoy It. I've Never Read Such Informative Content Before. I'll Keep Sharing Such Information With Us Men Brown Leather Jacket

  30. This is an awesome article, Given such an extraordinary measure of data. We offer safe and trusted online site for gamer. click here: 카지노사이트

  31. I really appreciate your writing skills, continue to write more interesting article like this one. We operate a website where you can play online games. visit here: 바카라사이트

  32. Your way of telling everything in this article is genuinely pleasant, all can easily understand it, Thanks a lot. We recommended to you our safest Online games. go here: 안전카지노사이트

  33. From some point on, I am preparing to build my site while browsing various sites. It is now somewhat completed. If anyone looking for safety playground for online gaming, Feel free to visit my site: 카지노사이트


Thanks for taking the time to comment! I love reading them all.