Our visit to Chuck E Cheese turned out to be lots of fun! By playing the games, I was able to get great ideas on creating educational games. I found a game called Sea Quaizy, that I thought was entertaining and simple to play. Although I enjoyed playing other games too, I chose this one to modify because it seemed like it could be a fun educational game as well.
To play the game, you have to insert a coin in the slot. A small ball is elevated up by springed coils, after you press the button, the ball rolls down a ramp that guides it down to the bottom of the “sea”. As the ball makes its’ way down the ramp it starts spinning 3 starfish. The starfish have 5 different colored rays/arms. The player then proceeds to stop the starfish on the same colored rays/arms by pressing the button 3 times. At the bottom of the “sea” the ball passes underneath an octopus. The octopus has various point values on each of its 8 arms. Whatever point value lights up when the ball passes underneath an arm is the number of tickets awarded to the player. This game is based on luck and the outcome is random. I got LUCKY three times!
My modification to Sea Quaizy will be geared towards 4th-5th graders. I’m not sure exactly how I will create this game…some ideas that I have are putting fractions (1/2, 1/4 etc.) on 1 spinning circle, on another circle put percentages of what the fractions equal (50%, 25% etc.) The goal of the game would be to match the fraction with the percent. I would divide my students into two equal groups and they will each have a turn at spinning the wheel. Whatever fraction the wheel lands on, the student has to tell me the percentage of that fraction. They will get 1 point if they answer correctly. Then they will have a try at spinning the percentage wheel, if it lands on the correct percentage of their fractions they get two more points. If they don’t give me the correct percentage answer after the first spin, they won’t get any points and the other team will have their turn.
Since I plan on teaching children with special needs, it is known that they learn at a faster rate through visual queues and play. Children learn best through playing because fun activities help to increase their level of focus (an interesting article on learning through play). Trying to teach them fractions through a game will help them to memorize the percent of fractions.