Games & Play / Card Games / Game 5 Disponible en español

Easy Counting

Practice adding two numbers together by counting on from the higher card.


Activity Summary

The goal of this 2 player game is to win the round by having the highest total between two cards. The player who wins the most rounds wins the game.



  • Remove all face cards from the deck.
  • Aces count as 1.
  • Be sure to shuffle the cards.
  • Pass out all the cards in the deck so each player has an equal number of cards.



How a turn begins:

Players take two cards from their deck and put them in a row number side up. First, they move the higher number card to the side without counting it, saving all their fingers for counting the lower number card. They say the higher number out loud and count on from there. For example, with 5 + 3, they would say “5,” then add the 3 more (“6, 7, 8”) by counting on their fingers to keep track. Players can say “I start with 5 so three more fingers are: 6, 7, 8. So, the total of 5 + 3 is 8.” If players get doubles (two of the same card), they can count on from either card.


How a turn ends:

The player with the highest total sum wins both hands and puts all four cards (two from each player) in a personal saved pile to count at the end of the game. If there is a tie, they should play another round (with each player receiving two more cards); the person who wins that round gets all eight cards.

How the game ends:

Play until the players have no cards left. The winner is the one with the most cards in their own saved pile at the end.


Read the Mini Story

  • Make playing even more fun by telling a story about the game: The King likes to be quick, so he finds a fast way to add up the numbers on the cards. First, he finds the card with the highest number and moves it aside without counting on his fingers. Then he can use all of his fingers to count the second number. In this way, he saves a lot of time counting.

Support Learning

  • Show your child how to count on: Say the first number and move that card aside. Then start counting from that number to add the numbers on the second card. (for example, to add 3 + 2 say: “3, 4, 5”). Encouraging children to use this approach helps them be more accurate when counting.
  • Your child may be able to move from counting on their fingers to counting out loud without using their fingers. 
  • Eventually, with lots of practice, your child will be able to remember the answers to simple addition problems without having to count. 

Adjust the Challenge

Make It Easier

  • Remove some of the higher numbers (6, 7, 8, 9, 10) from the deck.

Mix Things Up

  • Designate as the winner the player with the lowest total on the cards (instead of the highest) in each hand.

What to Play Next

If your child is still practicing the skills in this game, then continue having fun playing this game! Try the tips to support learning and ways to adjust the challenge. When your child is ready for a new game, play Queen of 10s.

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