Do you want to trick your son or daughter into thinking? Tangible Play is the way to do it! So often in education history, teachers and schools took thinking out of the classroom ( I fell victim to this in elementary school!). Have you done this worksheet? Good. Can you spell unfinished? Great! You want to know something outside of the text book or workbook? Are you crazy!?!?!?! Thankfully, Common Core requires teachers to shift how we teach things. It welcomes problem solving and answering why, not just regurgitating information.
When I was given the opportunity to pilot a program that links the iPad with interactive pieces, I jumped on it. Tangible Play is a company that creates “games” that interact with the iPad. I use the term games loosely because although they can mesmerize players for long periods of time, they make a player problem solve. I am currently piloting a Tangram game (shown above), Words, and Doodles. All of these games my students have learned how to play and became hooked quickly.
Students are challenged in this game to create more and more advanced images using Tangram pieces. As the student plays, harder levels are unlocked. Some students fly threw the different puzzles, while others have to sit and look at the image and try out a few arrangements before they create the image displayed on the screen.
Words is a two player game. Students are given a picture in which they must figure out a word to spell based on the image. The word being spelled is not always a dead give away, and players get points for putting down correct letters (hangman style). This game can be competitive, so make sure you set parameters on behavior (especially if you have a few rowdy boys in your class!)
Doodles is absolutely my students’ FAVORITE game. You can use any piece of paper and writing utensil to play this game. We put a whiteboard on the floor and expo markers. This game “drops” smiley faces down the screen that the player must create “doodles” to bounce off of to hit a target. Once this target is hit enough times, the player is taken to an advanced board. This is an extremely challenging game, and an adult can get hooked easily (I did while playing).
If you want to hook your students to a game that will make them problem solve, then Tangible Play is for you.