Go fish (-teen and -ty numbers)

A thinking mathematically context for practise resource focussed on building relationships between representations of 2-digit numbers


Syllabus outcomes and content descriptors from Mathematics K–10 Syllabus © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, 2023


  • MAO-WM-01
  • MA1-RWN-01
  • MA1-RWN-02

Collect resources

You will need:


  • Shuffle the cards.
  • If you have 2 players, deal 7 cards to each player.
  • If you have 3 or more players, deal 5 cards to each player.
  • Put all of the left-over cards in a central pile.
  • Choose a player to go first. Then, take turns to look for matching pairs. Once you have a pair, you can put the pair down and keep it. Take it is in turn to ask a player for a specific card. For example, “Amy, do you have ‘thirteen’ in words?”
  • If the player has the card you asked for, she or he must give you that card. If she or he doesn’t have the card, they say “go fish” and the person picks up a card from the central pile. If you happen to draw a card you need, a pair can be made. Otherwise, it is the next player's turn.
  • Go Fish continues until either someone has no cards left in their hand or the draw pile runs out.
  • The winner is the player who then has the most matches (sets of pairs).
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