October 20, 2016

Making Math Fun with Logic Roots Children's Games

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I have a confession to make, growing up I never really liked math. While I enjoyed geometry, I just wasn't a fan of the rest of it. Oddly enough, I loved science, which does actually incorporate math from time to time. Forget algebra and the more advanced stuff...eek! Luckily, I developed more of a liking to it back in my college years or at least I got better at. These days, math and I now have a more amicable relationship. My son is still young, so its difficult to say if he's inherited the same gene that made me detest math during my childhood years. Perhaps he'll be the opposite and become a total wiz at it!

Let's be honest, most of us can't do without math in our daily lives, so it's my goal to prepare him as much as possible. Flash cards and other fun, hands-on activities are always helpful. Since board games are a personal favorite here, I also thought it'd be beneficial to find some that could offer a little educational experience at the same time. Thanks to the folks at Logic Roots, we can now make that happen. Their entire line of math games add a new twist to the average family game night!



ABOUT LOGIC ROOTS:
We are a team of IIT Alumni & Math experts. With full dedication we are Reinventing How Kids Practice Math. Our products provide more practice in the same time. Wrapped in addictive fun games we deliver fun ways to win over Math. 
THE LOGIC ROOTS MISSION STATEMENT:
To make Math most loved subject for every child. Love for Math comes from understanding of Math. Understanding & mastering math, is all about practice. The more you practice, the more you master. There is no secret sauce! We design systems to help students practice up to 20 times more in the same time with less effort. Building understanding of Math with love & ease for students, teachers & parents.


We've been checking out three fabulous games from Logic Roots–each one covering a different type of math:



OCEAN RAIDERS:
  • Focuses on addition, number recognition, and number sequencing (including carrying and non-carrying of one and two digit numbers)
  • Created for first graders and up
  • Two to four players

Ocean Raiders starts off with a story about a ship that has sunken in the middle of the ocean during a rough storm, along with bundles of gold on board. The gold is now somewhere beneath the depths of the ocean in Sector 49 waiting for courageous "Ocean Raiders" to find it. The idea is for players to get to that treasure and be the first person who does.  

 

It's set up like a board game, although the play strategy is quite unique. There are numbers randomly scattered all over the board with no set order. Players determine their movements by rolling the die. The first turn starts off simply with each player finding their initial number spot, but every subsequent turn offers a fun math challenge that will have players "diving" into some serious adding skills. So let's say a player rolls a four on their first turn, they will move to the number four spot. Their second turn gets more challenging, because they will have to add the following number they roll to four in order to determine their next movement on the board. To make it more interesting (as if it weren't already), there are "typhoon" spots that can bring a player to another area on the board. This feature is very reminiscent of the old game of Shoots and Ladders.




It is definitely a challenging game to win, because your distance to the winning spot does not depend on rolling higher numbers to get there faster. Each player is constantly moving closer to and then further away depending on the outcome of each turn. Plus, a player must have an exact sum of 49 to reach Sector 49 and win the game (and gold). I personally think this is a really neat way to play and adds extended playtime, which in turn means more learning. There are even some variant game play suggestions included in the instructions. 


The only con that I had with this game was the quality of the included erasable marker pens for writing on the slates. These slates are optional and can be used to give kids a more visual representation of where their next move should be. The ink did not hold up well on the material. Every time we wrote on them, it would smudge and quickly dissipate. This wasn't a total deal breaker for me, because it's just as easy to pull out a simple pencil and paper for the same purpose. With that being said, Ocean Raiders was still my favorite of the three games, because addition is the next math that I'll be teaching my son, and he just adores anything that has to so with the sea.




 BIG CATCH:
  • Focuses on division (with and without remainders) and division as repeated subtraction
  • Created for children ages 10+
  • Two to four players

Big Catch is a board game that focuses on division. There are four fisherman who are lost at sea. They need to find their way home, but in order to do so they must seek the help of local villagers from neighboring islands. The fishermen must catch and divide their fish equally among the villagers in return for their help. The first person who reaches the home island wins the game, although the instructions do offer variable game endings.



Trying to learn this game was a bit confusing at first, because there are a lot of little side notes and extra rules to remember. Every number spot on the board represents how many villagers are living there. On each turn, a player must pick a card and divide fish equally to the villagers according to the number on that card. Players can even get to keep any remaining fish (dividing with a remainder) afterwards. There are special islands that offer bridges and helicopter pads to bring a player to another spot on the board. Again, this gives it a Shoots and Ladders feel. There are even "savage" (red) islands that players won't want to land on, as well as surprise cards that can cause you to miss a turn or even jump ahead a few spots.

 

My only complaint with this game is the same one mentioned in Ocean Raiders, and that had to do with the erasable marker pens not writing properly on the supplied slates. I also wish the fisherman pawn pieces were made with a sturdier material such as plastic instead of cardboard. One day, I had the window open in the house and the breeze came in and blew the game pieces off the board. With that being said, the character designs are super cute and very fitting for the game, I just wish they were more durable. All in all, this is a really fun game that challenges kids to learn the ins and outs of division.
SAY CHEESE CAFE:
  • Focuses on multiplication, multiplication tables (from 2 through 10), use of divisibility rules, and identifying factors and multiples
  • Created for children ages 7+
  • Two to four players

Say Cheese Cafe is a little different than the two, above, since it's not really a board game. The story revolves around a happening cafe called Miceland. It's free food day and the mice go crazy, causing an all out food fight. Miceland's manager makes a happy suggestion that instead of fighting over the food, they should play a game to calmly collect it. The coin pieces represent food, such as yummy pizza and even desserts. Players receive the pieces divided into individual pouches. The first player takes a spin on the wheel to reveal which number will come into play. What's really neat is that there are two numbers to choose from with each spin. This gives children a choice on which multiplication table they want to work with (for example if their spin lands on "2,8" they can choose between the 2 table or the 8. There's even a downloadable cheat sheet on the Logic Roots website to help children along the way, or at least until they become familiar with the tables.


After the first player chooses one of the two numbers (let's say it's 2), they must also place a random food coin from their pouch into the food basket. The second player then pulls a coin from their pouch to see if it's a multiple of two. If it is, they must say, "Cheese!" and state the correct multiplication answer. If they are correct, they get to collect all the coins in the food basket. If not, they lose the chance to win more coins and it goes on to the next player. If a person answers correctly, they also get to take a spin on the wheel to change up the current multiplication table in play. 


There's even a bunch of twists and turns in this game, like rotten cheese coins that can ruin the rest of the food in the basket...ewww! If you receive one of these, you'll have to toss all the coins from the food basket into the trash bin. On the other hand, dessert coins will give a player extra points. This game is tons of fun and offers a wonderful opportunity for kids to learn and even brush up on their multiplication skills.





I'm loving it...fun games that actually teach math! Sign me up! I have to ask, "where have these been all my life?" I sure wish I had them when I was a child. I could've had a whole different outlook on the overall subject. It's nice knowing that learning math these days doesn't just have to come out of a textbook. Now don't get me wrong, we love books here my house, but kid's educational products like these Logic Roots games can offer my son an enhanced learning experience that will definitely make things a whole lot easier. I highly recommend them to both parents and teachers. They're especially helpful for homeschooling families.

Incorporating educational play and fun activities into the mix gives children the chance to not only grasp the subject at a higher level, but possibly even enjoy it. If they wake up every day looking forward to learning and seeking more knowledge, just think of the awesome possibilities for their future!






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12 comments:

brendashandmade said...

Those sound like great games. I really like learning games because it's a great way to have fun and learn at the same time. Those can also be used in a classroom. I was in a kindergarten class earlier this week and one of the things they did was play math games.

Kelly (Our Everyday Harvest) said...

I couldn't agree more, Brenda! These games would be great for teachers!

LoveForWords said...

Wow! All three look just amazing! And they cover all three different math skill set. Impressed! Seem fun! I will buy..Thanks for your review! Glad I stumbled upon your blog!

Alicia said...

Great! These games are so amazing.It looks so real,glossy and colorful.My kids will love it they will learn so much from these games.. Finally they will love math instead of hating it...

Johnson Minj said...

education plus fun always sounds interesting.

Kelly (Our Everyday Harvest) said...

You're very welcome! Be sure to give them a try. There are also a ton of other children's math games on their website! :-)

Kelly (Our Everyday Harvest) said...

It sure does, Johnson!

brendashandmade said...

What a fun box to receive! I like that you can customize it to flavors your family prefers. I think I would really like that chocolate wafer thing too. It is a good suggestion to have an informational sheet with the products. With allergies in my family, I would really need that.

Kelly (Our Everyday Harvest) said...

That is another good point, Brenda! If someone has allergies, then they are definitely going to need to see the ingredients and nutritional information.

Julie Waldron said...

This looks like a fun box. I like the idea of an allergen information sheet too.

Kelly (Our Everyday Harvest) said...

There are all kinds of yummy goodies inside...just good to know what's in them! :-)

Marion Collins said...

Looks like a good product. Nice allergic information.

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