Time to mingle

12th October 2007 at 01:00
Pick a book, any book, and open it up. The page you're on is your target number. Now shuffle a pack of playing cards and deal yourself and a partner five cards each.

Your aim is to mathematically mingle all the cards to make the target number. For example, if the target number is 64 and you have been dealt 2, 3, 4, 9 and an ace, then 64 could be made by 9 x 4 = 36, 36 x 2 = 72, 72 + 3 = 75, and 75 11 (An ace is worth 11 or 1) = 64.

If you use all your cards then you score the target number. If you cannot make the number, you are dealt two more cards. If you can make the target number with these extra cards then you score a quarter of the target number. If you cannot combine the numbers, your partner can have a go and try to steal your points.

If neither player can make the number, the cards are shuffled and a new game can begin. The winner is the player with the most points after five games

John Dabell is a teacher at Lawn Primary School in Derby.

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