This game develops or reinforces concepts of place value and forms a basis for regrouping. Students love to play this game. During the game students find patterns, look for relationships, make predictions, and solve problems.
Start with three blocks as the trading number (base three). After several games change to four blocks as the trading number (base four). Increase the trading number as students become more skilled. Eventually use ten as the trading number (base ten) but use two or three dice to speed up the game.
From Patterns in Arithmetic: Place Value - Booklet 2