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Decimal Place Value With Playing Cards!

Posted by Brittney Field on

In this quick and easy game, students compete against one another to form the highest decimal number using playing cards.  This game challenges students to think critically about the place value of digits in decimal numbers and how each digit's placement impacts the total value of the number.  It's also a strategic game that keeps students thinking about the odds of drawing certain cards as they try to form the highest decimal number (perhaps good for a probability lesson too!).

Note: You can also play this game with lower grade levels by replacing the place value columns with hundred thousands, ten thousands, thousands, hundreds, tens, and ones.

Materials needed:
  1. Score sheet - 1 per player (you can download a free copy by CLICKING HERE, or you can have students draw the template shown right into their notebooks)
  2. Deck of regular playing cards (remove all Jacks, Queens, Kings, and Jokers)
  3. Pencil for each player

It's easy to setup this fun decimal place value game.

Score sheets, a deck of cards, and pencils are all that are needed for this fun game!


Playing the game:

Number of players: 2-4

1. Shuffle the deck of cards.  Be sure that all face cards and Jokers have been removed.  Place the deck of cards in a pile facedown in the center of the table.

2. Each player takes a turn taking one card from the top of the pile.  Players place the card face-up directly in front of them so that all players can see each card that has been drawn.

3. Each player looks at the number on the card that he/she drew from the pile.  Then, each player looks at "Round 1" on their score sheet to decide which place value to assign the number.  The player can only write that number under one place value column (hundreds, tens, ones, tenths, hundredths, or thousandths).  Players should not show their opponents where they wrote the number on their score sheet.  Once each player has written down the number in a place value column, it cannot be changed at any point during the game.

  • In this game, drawing the 10 card does not represent 10, but represents the number 0.

Players try to make the greatest number in this decimal place value game.

Each player has to make decisions about where to place the digit as he/she receives a card.  Once written, the digit is locked in.


4. Players repeats steps 1-3 until all 6 place value columns have been filled in (which means that 6 cards should have been drawn by each player).

5. Players show their final number to their opponents to determine who has written the highest number.  

6. The player with the highest number must read his/her decimal aloud correctly  (i.e. one hundred and seven thousandths, not one hundred point zero zero seven) in order to score the points.

  • If the player with the highest number reads his/her decimal aloud correctly, he/she gets 1 point for the round.  The other players do not get any points.
  • If the player with the highest number does not read his/her decimal aloud correctly, he/she does not get any points.  Every other player gets 1 point for the round.  

7. Place all of the used cards back into the pile of cards and shuffle the entire pile again.  Begin the next round by repeating the same steps.  Play ends after 10 rounds have been played.


Did your students enjoy playing this game?  We'd LOVE it if you'd share one of these images on social or leave a comment in the space below!



Looking for other fun ways to practice decimals in your math centers? Check out these and other fun decimals games in our store.

5th Grade Place Value Game   


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  • Terrific idea! I work with gifted students and this will be a fine way for them to work with place value.

    David on
  • Great Game! I actually used for my Gifted students as an extension. We added rounding the final decimal to various place values, which in some cases made the values greater. Students were responsible in deciding to round or keep the original value.
    Thank You

    Felicia on
  • I look forward to using this with middle school students as a review. I am using a decimal place value chart online as a scorecard for students who are further along in their learning of decimals. I love your game. This modification may be a useful way to provide differentiation:)

    Laurie on
  • Having an observation on Wednesday. I will be using it as its very interactive!!

    kevin Fletcher on
  • This is soooo great! Thank you for sharing and the free download!

    Jessica S. on

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