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National Number Knockout

National Number Knockout 2020 calendar


Interested in Playing?

Rules for the 2020 competition have already been released and the 2020 Scouting board will be released in early February. In the meantime, break out those dice and practice on our 2019 N2K Scouting Board. Interested students and parents must familiarize themselves with our How to Play Guide. For reference, please download the FREE Rule Book. For more information about submitting a scouting video, please visit our National Number Knockout Scouting page.

How to Play GuideRule Book


What is National Number Knockout?

National Number Knockout is a nationwide math competition for students, ages 10-14, that culminates in a national championship for 16 finalists on a cruise and a chance to win $10,000. Students interested in entering the National Number Knockout Competition must submit a scouting video by February 23rd at 11:59 EST. This year’s Scouting Board will be announced to Prime Advantage members on February 3rd and to the general public on February 10th. Prime Advantage membership can be purchased until January 31st. For complete rules on how to submit a video and enter the 2020 National Number Knockout Competition, please visit the Scouting Videos page on the main National Number Knockout website.

How Is Number Knockout Played?

Number Knockout is played on a six by six grid of numbers. The classic Number Knockout board contains the numerals 1 to 36. However, the game can be played on a wide variety of boards, and players are encouraged to make their very own boards using a creative selection of numbers and patterns for practice. Number Knockout can be played with many different variations to make the game easier or harder. Because it is so easy to modify the game for a variety of players, it is perfect for students of all ages. For a short video tutorial on how to play, please visit the How to Play page on the main National Number Knockout website.

How Does the Competition Work?

Students between the ages of 10 and 14, who excel at Number Knockout, have a chance to enter the National Number Knockout Competition, which takes place each spring on a cruise ship. Interested students submit a scouting video. Winning students receive airfare and a cruise for themselves and one parent. In addition, the hard-working winner of the competition will also receive the grand prize, which is a $10,000 cash award. While Number Knockout is currently played by students enrolled in Classical Conversations' Essentials program, the competition is open to any and all eligible students. For more information about the competition and eligibility, please visit the Competition Details page on the main National Number Knockout website.

A Game on a Mission

Number Knockout is a fast-paced, mental math game with a mission to “Knock Out Innumeracy.” While many people are aware that illiteracy is detrimental to our society, few people contemplate the long-term effects of innumeracy. According to the 2015 PISA findings, which measures math, science, and reading scores worldwide, the U.S. now ranks 31st among 35 industrialized countries in math proficiency (Barshay, The Hechinger Report). The continuing slide in numeracy skills is concerning for a country that prides itself on our ability to innovate and lead, but Number Knockout is seeking to improve math education in this country by teaching students how to play an easy to learn and highly addictive game.

In addition to knocking out innumeracy by improving students’ mental math abilities, students playing Number Knockout practice speaking and listening to equations. This teaches students innumerable skills beyond mathematics such as accurately speaking the truth, carefully listening for the truth, and graciously defending the truth.

View 2019 Top 16 Finalists!View 2018 Top 16 Finalists!


Barshay, Jill. “U.S. Now Ranks Near the Bottom Among 35 Industrialized Nations in Math.” The Hechinger Report, Accessed October 5, 2017.