“ Brand: Green Board Games „
I've mixed up our usual home education schedule by changing Friday to games day. While this may sound a touch irresponsible, there really are an incredible number of educational board games available, as well ordinary games that have a great deal of educational value as well. "What's The Point" has very obviously been developed for the educational games market. This game is never going to compete with Cluedo, Operation or Who's Who in terms of entertainment. But it isn't a bad game to play, it is certainly far more fun than sitting down to a stack of workbooks, and I honestly believe it teaches more.
WHAT'S IN THE BOX?
A sturdy game board which is really a giant spinner once assembled.
48 Game cards
Answer check sheet.
The main game board just under 9.5" square. It has a large plastic spinner which you must force through a very small opening, but once it is put together it stays put together. Each player is dealt 7 cards. The aim of the game is to be the first player to discard all of your cards. Each player spins the spinner on their turn. If it lands on an illustration of a fraction, the player can discard any card which has the equivalent value, whether in fractions, decimals or percentages.
WHAT IS THE POINT?
I've found my children always picked up fractions easily, but decimals and percentages are a bit more difficult. This game allows children to be able to visualise the value of the fraction through the illustration, and then learn the equivalent amounts in decimals, percentages and of course as written instead of illustrated fractions.
IS IT ANY FUN?
In all honesty, this is never going to b my children's favourite board game. But they have asked for a second game after playing a round at times, and that is really all I am going to ask of such an educational game. My five year old really is too young for this, and he plays with me, as a team, but he does still have a bit of fun. My eight year old is actually learning from the game, and within 15 minutes had a grasp of concepts I spent weeks trying to explain last term. As far as I am concerned this alone made the game worth the purchase. While this game is never going to be one of my children's very favourites, it is something that will brought out every week or two for a quick game, ensuring that my son not only learns the equivalent values thoroughly, but retains the knowledge through repetition.
BREAKING THE RULES:
Anyone that knows me, knows I believe board game rules are made to be broken. After awhile this game will start to get boring. Once your child absolutely knows the values of each card - why not change the rules. A simple and fun variation is to deal twice as many cards and allow each player to discard two cards at once if they can create a maths equation that uses both cards and equals the value they have spun. For instance, if a child spins 3/4, they could play a 1/2 card plus a .25 card. This not only extends the life of the game - it adds a massive amount of educational value by teaching addition and subtraction of equivalent values.
If you are a home educator, then yes, without a doubt this is highly recommended. Likewise for any maths teacher who keeps a games cupboard to break up the routine (and apparently a number of American Schools have been experimenting with this, with excellent results). If your child is struggling with percentages, fractions and decimals this is well worth buying as well. As a teaching aid - this certainly warrants 5 stars, and as this is what I bought the game for, this is the rating I will be giving it.
If you are just looking for something your children will pull out and play by themselves on a rainy day though, I honestly could not recommend this game. This is not something children will play often without some encouragement. My children are happy to play this instead of school work, but I couldn't see them coming home from school to play a game that is very close to more school work. If you have a family games night and take turns choosing games, they may play this happily enough as a parent's choice, but this is not a game I would expect children to choose over and over again on their own. If I were rating this on entertainment value alone, I'd be torn between 2 and 5 stars. I will not rate down though because this is not the most exciting game. I don't believe it was meant to be. It certainly is one of the most educational games, and it does provide some entertainment while learning maths - which is a difficult thing to do.
This currently sells for £10.62 on Amazon. This is by far the least expensive price I have found for it. It is an unusual item, and other than Amazon and ebay, primarily sold through specialist educational toy shops, which tend to be expensive.