This is a level (2+ to 3+) mathematics in science contexts activity from the Figure It Out series.

A PDF of the student activity is included.

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Students will:

- add and subtract whole numbers.

Students should discover that:

- to win, the sum of the squares they land on must be greater than or equal to zero.

3 counters

2 classmates

FIO, Sustainability, Levels 2+-3+, Building an Eco-house, page 21

**Game**

**Points of entry: Mathematics**

As students play, ask them to think metacognitively (think about their thinking). Ask: *What strategies are you using to add or subtract after each square? Which numbers are easier to add or subtract?*

Check that your students know what to do if they end up in the negative numbers. For example, ask: *What would happen if you had no points and you landed on square 28?* They do not need a formal knowledge of integers (which are introduced in level 4); all they need is a way of keeping a tally of what they “owe” if they lose all their “credit”.

Remind students about fair dice rolls. They should all have an equal probability of landing on any square.

**Points of entry: Science**

Ask students why some squares are positive (gain points) and others are negative (lose points). Ask them to judge whether the “punishment fi ts the crime”. In other words, *Are the points values a good measure of the environmental impact?* Another way of putting this is: *Why might buying iron for a roof be worse than buying straw for insulation? Why does buying straw for insulation lose points?* [It still costs money to buy.] *Why does draining a swampy area lose points? *[It can destroy the wetland environment that wildlife depends on.] *Why does planting native tree seedlings collect lots of points?*

Students can identify which penalties seem the fairest and justify them. For example, *Should putting compost on a garden be worth fewer points than giving a talk on eco-houses?*