Gratefully shared with permission from NZ Maths

This activity is based on an ancient Chinese game in which players had to make given totals by using four single-digit numbers and the four operations. Thirty-one is a good target as there are many ways in which students can reach this score. Students could use a tally sheet to record who has the highest score in each round.
After students have played the game several times, the target number can be changed. Students may wish to describe why it is easier to get a target of 31 than a target of 13. Similarly, they can be given a target total such as 27 and asked to write as many four-digit combinations for it as they can.

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