(Piet Hein, 1942)

I’ve been using a small variant of hex in the age 5 to 7 classroom for several years. Apart from the smaller size, the only other innovation is to insist that the first player plays on the perimeter on their first move. Without a rule like this there is an elegant way to play on odd edge length boards that leads to a first player win. This proof and the no-tying proof is great for students around age 11.

Here are game sheets of various sizes…

To step through a sample game with your classroom click here.

Thanks to Marc Chamberland and his brilliant youtube channel Tipping Point Math for this beautiful video.

Standards for Mathematical Practice

MathPickle puzzle and game designs engage a wide spectrum of student abilities while targeting the following Standards for Mathematical Practice:

MP1 Toughen up!

This is problem solving where our students develop grit and resiliency in the face of nasty, thorny problems. It is the most sought after skill for our students.

MP3 Work together!

This is collaborative problem solving in which students discuss their strategies to solve a problem and identify missteps in a failed solution. MathPickle recommends pairing up students for all its puzzles.

MP6 Be precise!

This is where our students learn to communicate using precise terminology. MathPickle encourages students not only to use the precise terms of others, but to invent and rigorously define their own terms.

MP7 Be observant!

One of the things that the human brain does very well is identify pattern. We sometimes do this too well and identify patterns that don't really exist.


Please use MathPickle in your classrooms. If you have improvements to make, please contact us. We'll give you credit 😉

Gordon Hamilton

(MMath, PhD)


Lora Saarnio