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“Salute” is a fun addition/subtraction fact learning game




2, 3  

Title – A math game for integrating subtraction and addition as one concept

By – Aryn Merrill

Primary Subject – Math

Grade Level – 2-3

TLW use addition and/or subtraction to solve basic facts.

Materials: deck of cards, no jokers, 3 players

The game is called Salute! This is because the third player evenly deals out the deck of cards between the other two players. They count, “1,2,3, Salute!” As they say, “Salute!” they bring the first card in their piles to their foreheads, without looking at it, in a kind of salute.

Then, the two players look at one another’s foreheads as Player 3 adds or subtracts the numbers. Player 3 says, “The sum is ___” or “The difference is ___”. (This is great for that vocabulary that kids don’t otherwise get.) Then the two players try to be the first to guess their own number by adding or subtracting the other player’s number from/to the sum or difference. If they do it correctly, they take the other player’s card and the process repeats. The winner is the one with the most cards at the end. That player can then become Player 3.

My second graders adore this game and are becoming quite adept at basic addition and subtraction facts.

I can’t take credit for this lesson. It comes from my former school district, San Diego City Schools.


Aryn Merrill


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