Going for Gold

Primary/Junior (Age 6 – 12)

Curriculum Goal

Primary: Number Sense

  • Use knowledge of numbers and operations to solve mathematical problems encountered in everyday life

Junior: Number Sense

  • Use the properties of operations, and the relationships between operations, to solve problems involving whole numbers, decimal numbers, fractions, ratios, rates, and whole number percents, including those requiring multiple steps or multiple operations


  • Students and teacher sitting on the carpet in a circle. ​Students and teacher will be sitting on the carpet in a circle or on a video conference chat online.
  • Students should have previous experience with addition, subtraction (primary), multiplication, division and PEDMAS (junior).


In-person version

  • 1 standard 52-card deck with face cards removed

Online version


Primary (Going for Gold 15)

  • The aim is to get as close to 15 as possible without going over.
  • Dealer deals 3 cards to each player, face down.​
  • Players simultaneously flip over their cards.​
  • Each player tries to think of a way to combine their 3 cards using addition or subtraction to get a result of 15 (e.g., 8+2+5 = 15)​
  • Winner is the player who can the closest to 15 without going over.

Junior (Going for Gold 24)

  • ​Same rules as above except kids get 4 cards and they can use addition, subtraction, multiplication and/or division to get a result of 24.

Look Fors

  • How flexible are children with number facts and operations?​
  • Can children find multiple ways to get to the target number?


  • Add in a wild card that the students can elect to incorporate into their equation.​
  • Have the students pick the cards up into their hands to calculate themselves before laying their equation down.

Related Lessons

Students use addition and subtraction skills to reach a target number.

A possible extension, students use cards to reach a target number or one of its multiples.

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