Dr Paul Swan (PhD), Senior Lecturer in Mathematics Education, Edith Cowan University

‘What I like about Numero® is that it combines students’ love of card games with the learning of important skills. The Australian Curriculum encourages the development of fluency, while at the same time promoting problem solving and reasoning (especially in the ‘Challenge’ books and the newspaper challenges). I also like the way the game can easily be differentiated. It can be taught and played at different levels. To move from one level to the next, all you need to do is add more cards. You don’t have to buy anything extra—all the cards you need come in the original box. What this means is that all the students in the class can play Numero® at their own ability level. As a student’s level of fluency and reasoning improves, the teacher can move the student to the next level.

The Australian Curriculum refers to the use of digital technologies in the teaching of mathematics, so I am sure teachers will be pleased to know that Numero® now comes in electronic form. I think this is a real boost as students are keen to go online to play games. What I like is that students can play the ‘real game’ and learn valuable social skills and have the added benefit of being able to play online.’

Professor John de Laeter AO, DSc, FTSC


‘A knowledge of the basic number operations of mathematics is as important in today’s world as it is to be able to read and write. These mathematical skills can be effectively acquired through a card game called Numero®. Numero® is not only fun to play for people of all ages, but gives confidence in using the basic number skills in real-life situations. The basis of Numero® is so simple that six-year-olds can enjoy the game, but at its advanced levels can challenge upper-secondary school students. Furthermore, it provides the opportunity of learning problem-solving skills without the fear of failure.

‘I strongly recommend Numero® to parents, teachers and school principals as a mathematics teaching resource “par excellence”.’

Dr Anne Chapman, Lecturer in Pedagogy and Mathematics Curriculum, Graduate School of Education, The University of Western Australia

‘I have been using Numero® for the past three years as a means of professional development in pre-service mathematics education. Numero® is especially useful as a resource for the Number strand of the Student Outcome Statements in Mathematics.

‘Trainee teachers have been most impressed with the use of Numero® as a means to incorporate increasingly complex mathematical skills into their lessons in a novel and interesting way. Numero® provides teachers with an opportunity to vary their approach to teaching computational skills, and is flexible enough to address the needs of different learners. It is a highly motivational way to teach mathematics to children in schools.’

Associate Professor Peter Brinkworth, Senior Lecturer, School of Education, Flinders University of South Australia

‘I first became aware of Numero® through an article in the Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom and was intrigued by the claims made for it. We had been looking for ways to help teacher education students see how to provide appropriate practice for children in mental calculation, since this is now a major imperative in schools. Pencil-and-paper techniques are less important than they used to be, and clearly children need to be able to make intelligent use of a calculator. However, most of the calculations done by people today are mental, and facility in choosing and using different methods must occupy more of our time when educating children. Most methods of practice are limited or become boring for children.

‘Enter Numero®. It is not only exciting to play, but it rewards constructive thinking strategies and involves rapid calculation, using a range of numbers from simple number facts through to quite complex fractions, decimals and so on.

‘My teacher education students found Numero® both enjoyable and useful to play and quite a few of them wanted sets of their own.’

Jan Ladhams, Mathematics Consultant, STEPS Professional Development (2010)

‘I love Numero®Numero® offers students the opportunity to construct their mathematical understandings using various learning styles. The cards are visually appealing, with the numbers set out in easily recognised standard patterns, allowing logical reasoning and subitisation to occur. Students have mathematical conversations, therefore verbalising their thoughts, listening to responses and socially interacting. Students learn kinaesthetically as they order the cards in their hands and in the ‘centre’. And, the wonderful Numero® challenges allow students to work in a solitary way and further develop their skills. Numero® is a game that appeals to children who are just becoming aware of quantity, through to adults who are accomplished mathematicians. Children can play adults and beat them because it is a game of strategy and chance.’

Helen Moxham, Tangram Tuition, Geraldton (2012)

After 30 years of being a primary school teacher, and now a private tutor in Geraldton, the following are extracts from Ms Moxham’s endorsement:

‘I first came across the game Numero® in 2000, when teaching a Year 1 class. I enjoyed working with both the students and their parents and was impressed with the way such young students could have success with maths in such a fun way. Over the next few years of teaching middle primary, I was fortunate enough to be involved in a whole-school approach to Numero®, involving playing the game, completing the challenges, entering the school competitions and upskilling parents on how to play Numero® at home.

‘In 2006, I opened a tutoring centre in Geraldton. Knowing how effective Numero® could be in providing students of all ages with the opportunity to develop mental and problem-solving strategies, I quickly included it as a resource when planning for improvement with my students. Over the last five years, my students, of varying ages and abilities, have participated in the weekly challenges with great success.

‘As part of my program for all-age students, I teach a variety of mental computations. Once a child has learnt a new strategy, s/he can then apply it in the Numero® challenge or game. This allows for ongoing practise of these important strategies.

‘Another essential part of using Numero® through private tuition, is to educate and involve the parents. At the end of the initial numeracy assessment with a child, parents are recommended to purchase a pack of Numero® cards. They are taught how to play the game with their child, and told how and when to introduce the Wild Cards. Playing Numero® is an effective way to provide ongoing opportunities for children to practise the mental strategies they have learnt, in a fun but challenging way.

‘I highly recommend using Numero® as a resource in out-of-school tuition, as it not only provides ongoing opportunities for the children to practise a variety of mental strategies, but it takes maths into the home, encouraging the parents to be involved in their child’s learning.’

Robert Thomas, teacher of children with learning difficulties, South Australia

‘What is urgently required is the provision of an innovative and exciting approach, with the potential to ignite and excite that inner drive and desire towards knowledge and exploration. Such a search, however, can prove to be elusive and often results in disillusionment. Despite the guarantees accompanying many educational games and activities currently available, there exist few with the capability to deliver. As the creations of “think tanks” and educational theorists, most teaching devices and aids possess a relatively short life span in the classroom. Once their novelty factor expires, their appeal, value, and (hence) effectiveness rapidly diminishes.

‘The exception to this rule appears to be the maths card game Numero®. This game possesses a home-spun, natural wisdom and “comfortableness” that welcomes, invites and engages all those who participate. At last, teachers, parents and students alike have a worthy and mature ally to support them in the process of learning.

Numero®‘s genius lies in its ability to highlight the contribution, role and dignity of the learner in learning. For all those entrusted with the responsibility and privilege of introducing, guiding and forming minds—young and not-so-young—through the intricacies and wonders of mathematics, Numero® is an indispensable, irreplaceable and serendipitous “must”.’

Denis Burns, North Monastery Primary School, Cork, Ireland, and university tutor, from Parent and Teacher Magazine

Numero® has now become a very popular activity in my maths classes which helps to develop lateral thinking and mental calculation. One feature of Numero® which particularly appeals to me is its flexibility, which allows it to be matched to the mathematical ability of the players. Therefore, I expect that pupils who learn the game in First Class will still be playing and enjoying Numero® in Sixth Class—albeit at a much more advanced level.

‘I have long been an advocate of learning through play. The revised maths curriculum also lays great emphasis on mental calculation and group discussion. On all of these counts, Numero® should be a winner.

‘I strongly recommend this resource to schools.’

Janet Giblett, Rossmoyne, Western Australia

‘The game of Numero® is not only for school children—it’s a game for all ages. I thoroughly enjoy playing Numero® with my friends and we’re all senior citizens! By using all of the Wild Cards, it becomes a real challenge.

‘Not only is Numero® enjoyable, but it helps to keep those grey cells active!’

Audrey Anderson, Scarborough Wider Vision, Western Australia

Numero® … making the mind work: providing mental stimulation and the joy of re-discovering skills long since lost!’

Ben – Aged 10

‘I think Numero® is a heaps good game. Before I played Numero®, I was alright at maths and now I am excellent. I think it made big changes for me in my adding-up skills and multiplication. Maths is much better than before because now it is fun.’

Sam – Aged 11

‘I think that Numero® is a fun, challenging card game. Before I played Numero®, maths was hard and boring. When I started to play Numero® with my tutor, Robert, I became more confident in my work. I think that anyone who wants to learn maths in a fun and easy way can now do it by playing Numero®.’