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    (4) Can I play a game to learn to write Mayan numerals?

    Mayan Math Game                                             

    While the Exploratorium activity is a fantastic way to introduce students to the problem solving aspects of archeology and the connections between archeology and math, the “Living Maya Time” page on the Smithsonian website has a more accessible game for learning the notation of the Mayan number system.  The system has three symbols, a dot to represent 1, a line to represent 5, and a shell to represent 0 as a place holder. The place holders in the Hindu-Arabic base 10 system that is used today are represented with blanks from left to right.  The place holders in the Mayan system are squares that hold a combination dots and lines or a shell to represent zero.  These squares are stacked vertically to represent a single number.  The game continues to include addition and subtraction.