Saturday, January 9, 2016


Sergeant Schaar here! This past week we have been learning all about the coordinate grids. For those who teach 5th grade you'll understand, but if you don't, fifth grade is full of fractions and decimals. Every part and aspect of fractions and decimals, we probably do it. So when it is time to move away from fractions and decimals for a little while, it is like a breath of fresh air! 

I have been planning this activity for a while. I wanted my kids to actually experience the coordinate grids, and what better way than through Battleship?! 

Set up and materials were so easy, are you ready for this? All I used was flat black sheets and painters tape. Yep, that's it! I got it all at Walmart. I used strips of red and blue fabric to let the kids wear to represent what team they were on, but it isn't necessary for this activity.

 All I did was move all the desks out of the way and simply hung the sheets with paper clips in the middle of my classroom to create the 2 sides of the game.

To create the playing board, all I did was tape the x and y axis first and added for lines in both directions from there. TIP: I used painters tape because it comes off of carpet easier than masking tape does. This makes for a quick and easy clean up!

At the beginning of the activity I had the students choose a color strip from a bag to decide what team they will be on, in my case I used red team and blue team. I needed one student to be the commander, the person who would give me  the answer and be in charge of keeping track of hits and misses. This was chosen by a simple black star on the strips of paper. Then we read a letter I created about the rules of the game. 

Students had to build the following boats with the bodies being the boats,
2 - 2 person boats
1 - 3 person boats
1 - 4 person boats

This was all the same as the board game Battleship except one thing, which was the students didn't stand in spaces, they stood on the perpendicular lines to practice their graphing skills. Each student was standing at an ordered pair and was responsible for knowing if their part of the boat was sunk. When they were still in the game, they were standing, when they had been sunk, they sat down.

Now I took this past just firing at each other. They had to solve problems that I projected on the Promethean Board, and if a team got it right they were able to fire at their opponents. If they missed, the other team got a chance to steal the firing opportunity. 

Here are the charts they used to keep track of hits and misses. This also helped them when they were firing at their opponents. 

My kids really enjoyed this activity, and I don't think they even realized they were practicing the skill we were learning about all week! I wish I could post more pictures of my kids, but most of my pictures have all of their faces and they can't be posted. This picture below is one of my favorites because they were so intense about strategizing where they were fire next.

If you have any questions about how I made this come alive in my classroom, please email me or comment below! I'd love to help you out!

Below is an activity students can play together as a math center or station! A mini version of Battleship!


  1. I love this activity! Thanks so much! What's your email address? I have a few questions.

    1. Ashley, thanks for stopping by! My email is :)