Best Math Tricks for Kids – Improve Your Mental Maths

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Updated on: Educator Review By: Michelle Connolly

Fun math tricks video explaining the steps required to always end at the answer 8! Practice your mental maths skills with some magic maths and wow your audience by always knowing the end answer! This video can be used by parents and children independently. A great way to have fun with maths and develop your mental maths skills.

More magic math tricks.

Magic Math Puzzle – Practice your Mental Math | Math Games for Kids | Math Trick | Magic Maths

Are you looking forward to playing some games and tricks with your kids? Or else let them play these tricks on you? There are some tricks and cool math puzzles which we will get you introduced to, and this educational video is all about the trick of receiving the same answer no matter what the chosen number is.

The idea behind this magic math puzzle is to follow some steps, apply them to the number that the player have chosen, and then bring out the same answer at the end, no matter what the number that was chosen is. The only rule to this game or puzzle is to let the player choose a two-digit number in order for the answer to be correct at the end.

The answer for this trick and playing it should be 99, but in order for this puzzle or game to work out at the end, there are some important steps to be followed and which should stick to the mind of the one doing it in order to show the people he/she playing with the real magic. The different steps which we are referring to include:

Maths Tricks
Math Tricks for Kids – Math Brain Teasers for Kids

– The kid (since he will be the one responsible for the game) will make the other person choose a two-digit number and make sure of this step because it is the most important, then after choosing the number, they will need to reverse it.

– Now there are two-digit numbers, the one chosen from the beginning and the second number after it was reversed.

– Now, the small number should be subtracted from the bigger one.

– The answer should be then taken and reversed as well .

– the digits should be reversed.

– Finally, that final number that you got should be added to the one you received when you subtracted.

The final answer for this mathematical puzzle and trick should be 99 at the end, this is the whole point behind playing this game and giving people the chance to wait for the magic to happen.

Mind-blowing Maths Tricks to Boost Calculation Skills

Magic Math Tricks for Kids – Number Tricks for Kids

Isn’t it interesting to play with the numbers and manage to bring the same answer at the end of the road? For the kid to prove to the people he/she is playing with that the answer will always be 99 and that this is the magic, he/she will need to let them play the game more than once and let the kid solve the puzzle.

Practising the kid’s mental math usually happens this way, depending on the numbers, playing games and solving puzzles, and this usually helps the child to understand the mathematical operations and know how to do them correctly without any errors, whether addition, subtraction, multiplication or division (Counting Games).

We have other mental math tricks on our channel for those who want to play with the numbers more and see what they can do. There are those math tricks with the same idea as this one, it is all about the steps to be followed and the type of numbers that should be chosen, here are some to check (Mind Tricks) and there are those which will also be useful when it comes to teaching the kids the different math rules in general, which are addition, subtraction, multiplication and division (Magic Maths Tricks).

There are lots of tricks in general that the kids could depend on to become mathemagicians and play with numbers, you could also check this video and learn more logic puzzles and at the same time manage to do some challenges (Solve the Logic Puzzles).

These different mental math tricks are useful when it comes to parents as well because they will find creative games to play with the kids which will give them the chance to think, solve mathematical problems and equations and at the same time learn something useful for them – so it is not just a thing needed for the kids, but it is also needed for the parents and teachers as well, it should go both ways.

Let the kids learn these tricks, know the steps that should be followed in every single one of them, and give them the chance to try it all with you and then with their friends.

Easy-to-follow activities will support you and your child to learn and practice new concepts as well as enjoy spending time together. Help your child to progress and explore and most importantly – have fun!

Best Practices for Learning and Memorizing Math Tricks Effectively:

Math tricks can be powerful tools for enhancing mental math skills and making calculations faster and more efficient. However, simply memorizing these tricks without understanding them isn’t as effective as learning them strategically. Here are some best practices to help you learn and memorize math tricks effectively:

1. Understand the Underlying Math:

Don’t just memorize the steps: Before diving into memorizing the trick, take the time to understand the underlying mathematical principles involved. This will help you connect the trick to existing knowledge and make it more meaningful.

Ask yourself “why”: Question each step of the trick and try to understand the logic behind it. This will strengthen your understanding and make the trick easier to remember and apply in different situations.

2. Focus on Visual Representation:

Draw diagrams and use visual aids: Many math tricks can be visualized through diagrams, flowcharts, or number lines. These visual representations can solidify your understanding and provide a mental framework for recalling the trick.

Connect the trick to real-world scenarios: Visualize how the trick can be applied in everyday situations. This can make it more relatable and easier to remember.

3. Practice Regularly and Variedly:

Don’t rely solely on rote memorization: While some repetition is necessary, relying solely on memorization without practice can lead to forgetting the trick over time.

Incorporate the trick into different problems: Practice applying the trick to various types of problems to solidify your understanding and build fluency.

Space out your practice: Studies show that spaced repetition, instead of cramming, leads to better long-term retention.

4. Make it Fun and Engaging:

Turn practice into a game: Create games or challenges that involve using the math trick. This can make learning more enjoyable and engaging, leading to better retention.

Connect with others: Discuss the trick with friends or classmates, explain it to someone else, or find online communities dedicated to math learning. Explaining the trick to others can solidify your understanding and make it more memorable.

5. Celebrate your progress:

Acknowledge your efforts and progress, no matter how small: This helps build confidence and motivates you to continue learning.

Focus on the journey, not just the destination: Learning math tricks takes time and effort. Enjoy the process of discovery and learning, instead of solely focusing on achieving perfection.

Mental Math by Age Group:

Developing strong mental math skills is a journey that begins early and progresses throughout childhood. Here’s a breakdown of age-appropriate mental math activities and tricks tailored for different age groups:

1. Preschool (Ages 3-5):

  • Focus: Building number sense, recognizing patterns, and basic counting skills.
  • Activities:
    • Singing counting songs: Engaging songs help children learn number sequences and associate numbers with quantities.
    • Sorting and classifying objects: Sorting toys or objects by color, size, or shape encourages comparing and grouping, building foundation for addition and subtraction.
    • Playing simple counting games: Games like “I Spy” or “Roll and Count” encourage counting practice in a fun and interactive way.

2. Kindergarten (Ages 5-6):

  • Focus: Mastering basic addition and subtraction facts within 10, building place value understanding, and developing early estimation skills.
  • Activities:
    • Using manipulatives: Counting blocks, place value chips, or even buttons can help children visualize numbers and operations like addition and subtraction.
    • Playing flashcards: Flashcards with basic addition and subtraction facts can be used in various games like “Go Fish” or “Memory” to make practice engaging.
    • Estimating and comparing quantities: Ask children to estimate the number of objects in a group before counting them, helping them develop estimation skills.

3. Elementary School (Grades 1-5):

  • Focus: Fluency in addition and subtraction within 20 and 100, understanding multiplication and division facts, and developing problem-solving strategies.
  • Activities:
    • Mental math races: Divide students into teams and have them solve addition or subtraction problems mentally, with the first team to finish the set correctly winning the race.
    • Number decomposition: Encourage children to break down numbers into smaller parts to solve addition and subtraction problems (e.g., 14 + 6 = (10 + 4) + 6 = 16).
    • Using multiplication and division tricks: Introduce age-appropriate multiplication and division tricks, like the distributive property or skip counting, to enhance calculation efficiency.

4. Middle School (Grades 6-8):

  • Focus: Expanding skills to include fractions, decimals, percentages, and estimation with larger numbers.
  • Activities:
    • Mental math estimation challenges: Present various real-world scenarios (e.g., calculating grocery bills, estimating travel time) and ask students to estimate the answer mentally before using calculators or other tools.
    • Quick quizzes: Conduct short, timed quizzes with a variety of problems involving different operations to promote mental math fluency and problem-solving under pressure.
    • Fraction manipulation tricks: Introduce basic fraction manipulation tricks, like finding common denominators or adding/subtracting fractions with the same denominator, to improve efficiency.

Real-World Applications of Mental Math Skills

Mental math skills are not just confined to classrooms and textbooks; they play a vital role in navigating various aspects of daily life. Here are some real-world applications of mental math that demonstrate their significance beyond academics:

1. Personal Finances:

Calculating change: When making a purchase, quickly adding the price of the item and subtracting it from the amount you paid helps you determine the correct change you should receive.

Estimating monthly bills: Mentally adding up your various monthly expenses like rent, utilities, and groceries helps you estimate your total expenditure and manage your budget effectively.

Calculating tips: Leaving a tip at restaurants or cafes often involves mentally calculating a percentage of the bill amount, ensuring you tip appropriately.

2. Shopping and Budgeting:

Estimating costs: Quickly adding the prices of items you plan to purchase helps you stay within your budget and avoid exceeding your spending limit.

Comparing unit prices: Mentally calculating the price per unit (e.g., price per kilogram) of different product options helps you compare deals and make informed purchasing decisions.

Calculating discounts and sales: Mentally applying discounts or percentages off the original price helps you determine the final price you’ll pay.

3. Cooking and Baking:

Following recipes: Recipes often list ingredient quantities in specific units. Mentally scaling up or down recipe quantities based on the number of servings requires basic addition and subtraction skills.

Adjusting ingredients: Substituting or adding ingredients often involves mentally adjusting the recipe’s original quantities to maintain the desired flavor and consistency.

Estimating cooking times: Recipes might provide cooking time ranges. Mentally adding or subtracting time based on the size or temperature adjustments helps you gauge the cooking progress.

4. Everyday Problem-Solving:

Distributing resources fairly: Dividing tasks, chores, or resources among a group often involves adding up the total quantity and then dividing it equally, requiring mental math skills.

Making quick decisions: From calculating the price difference between two items at the store to estimating the time it takes to complete a task, we use mental math for various quick decisions throughout the day.

Estimating travel distances: Mentally adding up street numbers or using landmarks to estimate the distance to your destination can help with navigation, especially when relying on non-digital methods.

5. Games and Sports:

Keeping score: Adding points scored in various rounds or sets is crucial in many games and competitions.

Calculating statistics: Simple calculations, like figuring out batting averages or free throw percentages, can be done mentally in many sports contexts.

Estimating distances: In games like basketball or baseball, mentally estimating the distance to a target (e.g., the hoop or home plate) can be crucial for strategic playing.

6. DIY Projects and Home Improvement:

Measuring and cutting materials: Adding lengths or dimensions of materials is essential for accurate cuts and ensuring everything fits properly during a project.

Estimating project costs: Quickly adding the costs of materials helps you determine the overall budget for a DIY project, ensuring you stay within financial limitations.

Calculating paint or wallpaper needed: Estimating the area of a wall or room and relating it to the coverage area of paint or wallpaper requires basic multiplication and division skills.

Benefits of Strong Mental Math Skills in Children

Developing strong mental math skills in children offers numerous benefits that extend far beyond simply performing quick calculations. Here are some key advantages of fostering this essential skillset:

1. Enhanced Cognitive Development:

Improved memory and recall: Mental math activities often involve memorizing facts and procedures, which strengthens memory function and recall abilities.

Increased focus and concentration: Engaging in mental math exercises requires focus and concentration, leading to improved ability to sustain attention in various learning environments.

Development of critical thinking skills: Analyzing problems, breaking them down into smaller steps, and applying mental math strategies foster critical thinking abilities, crucial for solving problems in various contexts.

2. Improved Problem-Solving Skills:

Developing strategic thinking: Mental math encourages children to explore different approaches, consider multiple solutions, and choose the most efficient strategy, fostering strategic thinking skills.

Boosting logical reasoning: Applying math concepts and rules requires logical thinking and reasoning, which are crucial for problem-solving in various academic and life situations.

Enhancing mental flexibility: Mental math challenges children to adapt to different problem types and adjust their approach accordingly, building mental flexibility and adaptability.

3. Increased Confidence and Self-Esteem:

Sense of accomplishment: Mastering mental math challenges and overcoming difficulties can boost children’s confidence in their abilities and foster a sense of accomplishment.

Positive attitude towards math: Success in mental math can cultivate a positive attitude towards math, making learning more enjoyable and engaging.

Increased willingness to take risks: Confidence gained through mastering mental math can encourage children to take risks, explore new ideas, and approach challenges with a growth mindset.

4. Practical Applications in Everyday Life:

Estimating costs and making informed decisions: Mental math skills are used in various everyday situations, such as estimating grocery bills, calculating discounts, or comparing prices, empowering children to make informed decisions.

Managing personal finances: Basic mental math skills are essential for managing personal finances responsibly, such as calculating change, budgeting for future purchases, or understanding unit prices.

Enhancing spatial reasoning: Visualizing and manipulating numbers in their minds can improve spatial reasoning skills, which can be beneficial in various aspects of life, from understanding maps to playing games.

5. Foundation for Future Learning:

Stronger foundation in mathematics: Mastering mental math skills provides a solid foundation for future math learning, making it easier to grasp more complex concepts and solve challenging problems.

Improved performance in other subjects: The cognitive and problem-solving skills developed through mental math can benefit learning in other subjects, such as science, logic, and engineering.

Preparation for standardized tests: Many standardized tests include sections requiring calculation skills, and strong mental math skills can significantly improve performance in these assessments.

Challenges in Learning Mental Math

While developing mental math skills is beneficial for all children, some may face specific challenges that hinder their progress. It’s important to acknowledge these challenges and identify strategies to overcome them, ensuring all children have the opportunity to succeed in this crucial learning area.

Common Challenges:

Math Anxiety: Some children experience anxiety related to mathematics, which can manifest in difficulties focusing, negative self-talk, or avoidance of mental math tasks.

Learning Difficulties: Children with learning difficulties like dyscalculia may struggle with understanding the underlying concepts of numbers and operations, impacting their ability to perform mental math calculations.

Memory Difficulties: Difficulty memorizing basic facts and number sequences can hinder fluency and confidence when performing mental math.

Lack of Engagement: Traditional teaching methods might not cater to all learning styles, leading to disengagement and difficulty grasping concepts.

Strategies to Help Children Overcome Challenges:

Using Manipulatives: Concrete objects like counting blocks, place value chips, or even buttons can help children visualize numbers and operations, making them more tangible and relatable.

Incorporating Movement: Kinesthetic activities that involve movement and physical engagement can enhance learning and memory, especially for children who learn best through movement.

Breaking Down Problems: Complex problems can be overwhelming. Encourage children to break them down into smaller, more manageable steps, making the mental math process less daunting.

Mnemonics and Visualization Techniques: Using memory aids like rhymes or songs and encouraging visualization of problems can aid in memorization and enhance understanding.

Positive Reinforcement and Celebrating Progress: Focus on celebrating small victories and acknowledge their effort, even if mistakes are made. This fosters a positive learning environment and encourages persistence.

Seeking Additional Support: If challenges persist, consider seeking help from a teacher, tutor, or educational specialist who can provide personalized support and strategies tailored to the child’s specific needs.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What are some benefits of developing strong mental math skills in children?

Developing strong mental math skills offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Improved problem-solving abilities
  • Increased confidence and self-esteem
  • Enhanced cognitive development
  • Practical applications in everyday life
  • Stronger foundation for future learning

2. How can I help my child develop strong mental math skills?

Here are some ways to help your child:

  • Engage in fun and interactive activities: Games, songs, and real-world applications make learning enjoyable and engaging.
  • Incorporate mental math into daily routines: Encourage estimation and quick calculations during shopping, cooking, or travel.
  • Use manipulatives and visual aids: Counting blocks, number lines, and other visual aids can support understanding and visualization.
  • Focus on understanding, not just memorization: Explain the logic behind operations and connect them to real-world scenarios.
  • Celebrate progress and effort: Encourage your child, even if they don’t always get the right answer right away.

3. Are there any resources available to help me teach my child mental math?

Yes! Numerous resources are available online and offline, including:

  • Educational websites and apps: Many websites and apps offer interactive games and activities specifically designed to practice mental math.
  • Printable worksheets and workbooks: These resources provide structured practice opportunities with varying difficulty levels.
  • Children’s books and educational toys: Engaging books and toys can introduce math concepts and encourage exploration in a fun way.

4. My child struggles with learning mental math. What can I do?

If your child faces challenges, consider these steps:

  • Talk to their teacher: Discuss any learning difficulties and identify areas where your child needs extra support.
  • Seek help from a tutor or educational specialist: They can provide personalized strategies and address specific challenges.
  • Make learning fun and engaging: Use games, manipulatives, and real-world applications to keep your child motivated.
  • Focus on effort and celebrate progress: Acknowledge their hard work and encourage them to keep trying.
  • Be patient and supportive: Learning takes time and practice. Create a positive learning environment that fosters confidence and growth.


Developing strong mental math skills is a valuable journey that equips children with essential tools for success in academics and beyond. By understanding the challenges, implementing effective strategies, and fostering a love of learning, we can empower all children to embrace the world of numbers and unlock their full potential as confident problem-solvers and critical thinkers. Remember, the joy of discovery and the journey of learning are just as important as the final answer. So, let’s make math fun, engaging, and accessible for all!

Have you found this interesting? Come and check our maths articles: Multiplication TricksLego Math Games for Kids, and Fun Math Games.

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