15 February, 2010
A new game which I’ve introduced to my class is drench. I’m not sure where how I found the game, I thought it was via the Guardian Technology Pages but it was actually via a comment on their report on ‘Games to relax you’.
The game involves the player selecting one of 6 colours and trying to change all of the board into 1 colour in 30 moves or less. Drench has proved very popular with many of the children in my class, although not with myself as I am very colour blind and find I cannot tell a 2 pairs of the colours apart from each other!
To find a winning strategy children (or adults) have to plan what colours lie around the ‘active’ area (the area which they can change the colour for) and plan 2 or 3 moves ahead. It develops spatiality and thinking ahead, and like many of the best games contains simple gameplay which remains challenging through successively harder levels.
I find using it in the final 2 minutes around play or break works really well with my class and I have tried children working in table groups to complete the puzzle as quickly as they can. I also use it in plenaries and also introductions to maths sessions to revisit bit of spatial learning.
Spatial awareness, as I have mentioned previously, is an area I feel ICT (especially games based learning) can make large developments as children have the opportunity to explore spaces in an enjoyable context.