Smallest Number Challenge


You can help your child learn to order decimals with three decimal places.

What you need:

  • A set of cards with the face cards and number ten in each suit removed
  • 2 small round objects to represent a decimal point, for example buttons

What to do:

Play the Smallest Number Challenge, a game for 2 players.

Cards are shuffled and placed face down in a pile.

The first player draws 4 cards and turns these over. They use these cards, and a button, to make the smallest number possible with three decimal places. For example, if the cards 6,8, 5 and 4 are drawn the number, 4.568, is made: 

The next player takes their turn by drawing four cards and using these to make a number that is smaller than the number made by the previous player. They must use all the cards and the number must have three decimal places.

Play continues in this way until one of the players is unable to make a number smaller than their opponent’s. Their opponent then wins that round and scores a point.

The first player to reach 5 points is the winner.

What to expect your child to do:

Think about the placement of digits within each number so they can make the smallest number possible.


Largest Number Challenge - players have to make a larger number instead of a smaller one.

He Kupu Māori:

decimal number tau ā-ira
smallest iti rawa atu
smaller iti ake
decimal point ira

Download a file of this activity:

PDF (275KB)