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Subject: Gaming with the very young rss

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Andrew Moore
East York
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My nephew is just 3 and doesn't really grasp the concept of rules yet but there are a few things we do to introduce him to structured gameplay. Recently I found Anima at a discount store and after hearing that his mom was going to buy candyland I decided to buy it. We use it to demonstrate moving the ghost forward only to the colour that is rolled on the die. Today my wife was babysitting and I thought I'd pull out Dead Man's Treasure. It has very sturdy cardboard oval "islands" and nice numbered treasure chests. I pulled out the six islands and six treasure chest numbered one to six. Everything else I kept in the box. let him play independantly with them for a bit and then I took the treasure chests and shuffled them and placed one face down on each island and challeged him to find them in sequence. Flipping one up then, if wrong, returning it face down to the island he took it from and trying again until he had collected all six chests in order.
He had a lot of fun trying the "game" a few times. While he didn't seem to grasp the concept of doing it in as few tries as possible (he didn't really care whether he flipped up the wrong one every single time even though he knew what number was hidden there) he was introduced to a type of memory game and set collection.
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