# How Dominoes Can Be Used to Teach Math and Science

A domino is a small rectangular wood or plastic block marked on either end with spots or blanks that resemble those on dice. A domino is usually twice as long as it is wide, making it easy to re-stack it after use. It is also sometimes referred to as a bone, card, man or piece. When used in a game of chance, a domino is normally valued by the number of dots on it. A domino with more pips is considered “heavier” than one with fewer.

Dominoes are widely used in teaching mathematical skills. Students can practice adding, recognizing patterns, and solving equations using dominoes. This is especially helpful for students transitioning from manipulatives to symbolic representations of numbers and equations. This task can also be used to teach the commutative property of addition. Students learn that the sum of the dots on both ends of a domino can be different but the total number of dots is still the same.

To play the game, each player draws a domino from a stack or bag and places it on the table facing the other players. The first player (determined by drawing of lots or by who holds the heaviest hand) then plays a domino, touching only one side to begin a line of dominos that spread out and away from the original tile. The next player must then place a domino touching only the other side of the line and so on.

This type of domino game can also be played on a computer or by a group of people over the Internet. The advantage of this game is that it allows a lot more people to participate and can be played at any time, day or night.

When playing a game of dominoes, it is best to play on a hard surface, such as a tiled table. This makes it easier to stand the dominoes on edge and easier to see what is going on. Players can create a variety of domino art, including straight lines, curved lines that make pictures, grids that form shapes, and 3D structures like towers or pyramids.

Creating a domino art is a great way to spend a free moment or to help children learn about geometry. Nick Hevesh created an innovative method for building 3-D domino pieces with only the tools in his grandmother’s garage. He filmed each step of the process so that other amateur craftsmen could follow his example.

In business, a domino effect is a process that causes an initial event to trigger many others, in a chain reaction that ultimately leads to a desired result. This can be a positive or negative outcome, depending on the initial event and the outcome. For example, a domino effect can help to launch a new product but can be disastrous if it is associated with a major disaster or the financial crisis of 2008. The key is to pick the right dominoes — those tasks that will have the greatest impact — and focus on them until they are completed.