MATH GAMES REVIEW
Clumsy Thief in the Candy Shop
Cute concept, engaging play, only one math concept (adding to 20) involved.
Mfr. Recommended Age: 7 Years+
Total score: 77.5 points
Fun quotient: Excellent (80 points)
Math factor: Good (75 points)
Types of math:
Add single-digit #s
Add double-digit #s
Spot # groups that add to 20
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Single math concept
Collect the most candy cards.
The Quick & Dirty on Game Play
Each player begins with seven cards. The players look for any two cards in their hands that add up to 20 (i.e., a 14 card and a 6 card). The players put these pairs (Candy Stacks) down face up in front of them. The other players then try to steal one another's Candy Stacks by either: (1) playing a number card that, together with the top card of a Candy Stack, adds up to 20 (i.e., if there'a 14 card on top of a Candy Stack and the player is holding a 6); (2) placing a Thief card on top of a Candy Stack; or (3) playing a Jail card on top of a Thief card.
When all of the stealing is done for the round, each player takes one new card from the deck, beginning a new round. Play continues until one player is out of cards or there aren't enough cards left in the deck for every player to take one.
Clumsy Thief in the Candy Shop is easy to learn, moves quickly, and has cute artwork. Our testers love the game's premise, and the Thief and Jail cards add a great wrinkle to game play.
There is a speed element to Clumsy Thief, but it wasn't as controversial as you might think (even for our littlest testers), because there's sufficient card variety such that there aren't that many incidents in which two players could both steal the same Candy Stack. This also makes it possible to play Clumsy Thief with players still learning which numbers add up to 20—since speed isn't typically that important, an older player can help a younger player figure out which Candy Stacks that player can steal.
As is always the case in kids games, no one likes to have "their" Candy Stack stolen. It helps ease the pain a bit that stealing happens so frequently that even our littlest testers quickly realized that they would likely have a chance to steal the stack back.
The Math Factor
Clumsy Thief in the Candy Shop requires players to:
Add single- and double-digit numbers (totaling 20)
Recognize combinations of numbers that add up to 20
Players tackle multiple addition problems during every round of Clumsy Thief. They must both check whether the cards they have in their hand can be combined to total 20 and check the cards they are holding against the top cards of the Candy Stacks to see if there is an opportunity to steal.
Clumsy Thief in the Candy Shop has a hilarious premise that captures kiddos' imaginations. It's excellent addition practice in terms of recognizing which numbers add up to 20, though there isn't a ton of variety to the math. To change up the addition, try the original Clumsy Thief, in which players must find number pairs that add up to 100.