Getting a little bit more technical, here are some more games that work really well in the classroom.

Blockbusters

I’m sure you know how to play this from the TV show. Here’s the DIY version: 

  1. I have my own set of levelled questions that I’ve made up and a laminated paper board and tokens that I made a few years ago. 
  2. It didn’t take that long to find two questions for each letter of the alphabet, for Levels 3, 4, 5 and 6 so I could revise with my Year 9s. Some of the links are quite tenuous – C for Circumference is fine. F for Find the sum of… is less so!

To save you the trouble of DIY, you can now find electronic versions. As a maths teacher I use MyMaths which has its own version of mathematical Blockbusters – the only problem is there’s only one level of question, so I can only use it with a certain group of students.

The TES has a Science version through a forum on their site. You need to register with the site to download this.

I’ve also found a site where you can buy software to make your own game  although I’ve not used it myself. Perhaps you have?

If you have a projector/interactive whiteboard in your classroom, then Blockbusters could be worth a go.

Quizdom

Lastly (from my brain anyway), Who wants to be a Millionaire. Well actually I don’t like to play this, although there are plenty of versions around. It’s just the Qwizdom remote handsets that I use.

This piece of software, and others like it, is incredible. You can set up your own multiple choice questions with pictures and import them into many games. Mission to Mars, a space rocket race, seems to be the favourite at our school. There are ready-made questions available but because the company is American we’ve had to adapt some of the questions and answers.

Students work individually to answer questions and key in their answers (a, b, c, d or True/False) onto their own handsets. The data on who was fastest, who did not answer, etc is all saved and available to the teacher after the game is finished.

It takes a little time to register each pupil onto their own handset, but once you’ve set it up with each student using the same one each time it’s fine. It takes up loads of memory, we need to have separate memory-sticks as our shared area in school cannot cope. However the benefits far outweigh the logistics.

I have found it a great way to spend a Friday afternoon as a treat for Year 10s. The deal is if they’ve worked hard all week then they get to prove it to me by showing off their knowledge in a game of Qwizdom!

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