Twins is a very simple pen and paper game that is suitable for young children yet can involve strategic moves for older children and adults. It can also help young children improve their number skills as they learn to recognise written numbers.

Age: All ages

No. of players: 2

Equipment: One sheet of paper and two pens/pencils

Time: 5 minutes+

Aim: To be the last player to join two identical numbers.

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1. One player writes the numbers 1 to 21 at random all over a sheet of paper. The other player then also writes the numbers 1 to 21 at random, making sure that any number is not too close to its identical number.

2. Players toss a coin to decide who will go first. That player draws a line (straight or curved) to join two of the same number (for example, the two 7s). The opposing player then draws a line between any other identical numbers (for example, the two 18s), as long as that line does not cross the line already drawn. Players take it in turns to draw lines (without crossing other lines) until one player cannot link any identical numbers.

3. The last player to join a pair of numbers wins. It can take some strategy to plan your earlier lines to make sure your opponent cannot place the last line in the game.

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