Word Problem Wednesday: Board Games!

Apr 29, 2020 | Windermere
What better way to spend time at home with family than with a game night? This week's word problems are all about using math to win at board games, so you'll definitely want to practice these problems before your next big game night!
Find the word problem below that’s the right skill level for you and give it a try. Take your time working it out — no peeking! — and when you feel you’ve found the solution, look below to check your solution against ours.
Enjoy your fun math practice, and be sure to check back next week for more!
Lower Elementary:
Question: There are six continents on a Risk game board. If there are 12 troops in North America, 16 troops in South America, 18 troops in Europe, 22 troops in Asia, 24 troops in Africa, and 100 troops on the board in total, then how many troops are in Australia?
Upper Elementary:
Question: Each side of a Monopoly board has 11 spaces from one corner to the next. How many spaces are there around the whole board?
Middle School:
Question: In each set of Scrabble tiles, there are 42 vowels, 58 consonants, and 2 blanks. Nine of the tiles are A tiles. What fractional part of the tiles are not A tiles?
Algebra and Up:
Question: In the game Clue, there are 6 suspect cards, 6 tool cards, and 9 location cards. A combination of 1 suspect, 1 tool, and 1 location is selected at random at the beginning of the game and put in an envelope. What is the probability that the combination in the envelope is the Candlestick, the Library, and anyone but Colonel Mustard?
Have you worked out the answer to the word problem you chose? Take your time finding the solution, we know you can do it! When you’re ready to check your work, look below to find our solutions.
Lower Elementary:
Answer: 8 troops
Solution: There are 12 + 16 + 18 + 22 + 24 = 92 troops on the board that aren’t in Australia, so there must be 100 – 92 = 8 troops in Australia.
Upper Elementary:
Answer: 40 spaces
Solution: Even though each side has 11 spaces, there aren’t 44 spaces because we’d be counting each corner twice. To find the number of spaces around the board, we only count one of the corners for each side, leaving 10 spaces to count for each side. That’s 10 × 4 = 40 spaces.
Middle School:
Answer: 31/34
Solution: There are 42 + 58 + 2 = 102 tiles in total. If 9 of them are As, then 9/102 = 3/34 of them are A tiles. That means that 34/34 – 3/34 = 31/34 of the tiles are not A tiles.
Algebra and Up:
Answer: 5/324
Solution: The probability that the crime took place in the Library with the Candlestick is 1/9 × 1/6 = 1/54. There are 5 suspects who aren’t Colonel Mustard, so that means that the probability that anybody but Colonel Mustard committed the crime in the Library with the Candlestick is 1/54 × 5/6 = 5/324.
If you found these practice word problems useful, you might be interested in learning more about Mathnasium@home, which gives you the same face-to-face Mathnasium instruction used in our centers for over 15 years, delivered in real time through your computer.