Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Brain Games.......

And while you are shopping this summer........

Don't forget to look for good "brain games".    Every two to three weeks we present a new brain game to our school.  These are educational, brain-working puzzles, toys, or games that we believe engage a student's brain and cause them to think in a different way than they normally would.  We think it not only makes the students more intelligent, but also makes school more fun.  They are always waiting to see what we'll bring in next.

 All of students in grades 3-12 learn to play chess in the first month of school if they haven't already.

 Wooden puzzles are wonderful!  These are available online at www.brilliantpuzzles.com.

 Raging Rapids-- there is only ONE way that all of the paddlers will fit inside the raft.

 My favorite!  Find It!  On the bottom is a list of about 40 items that are floating around inside all the little plastic pieces.  These come in other versions too: Zoo, Original, Stars and Planets.... etc.

Funny Farm - there are 50 different ways to solve this puzzle depending on where you place the big red tractor.

 Okay, maybe the Find It is my second favorite, and Banagrams is my real favorite?  My elementary students LOVE this.  I love it when they challenge each other and look up how to spell the words in the dictionary, or use interesting spellings of words like XI (a Greek alphabet letter) or Do, Re, Mi etc.  These are available at Target stores for around $15.
 These come in many forms, and our 8 year old and his parents haven't been able to solve this one yet, although the solution did not elude Joe Ebersole :-). 

 My third favorite?  A nice big puzzle of the USA.  Available at Toys-R-Us or similar store.

 We use the Boggle letters to see if students can make their own crossword puzzle using all the letters.  No re-rolling allowed!

I know, this isn't a brain game you can buy at the store, but........ you must admit it is creative. 

By the way, we have a few requirements for our students so that they aren't tempted to do their work fast and sloppy and then go and get the new game........not that they would ever do that of course.......

1.  Your work for the period must be finished.
2.  You must have a grade average of 85% or higher.