Thursday, July 16, 2015

Freeform tangrams: an imagination game by J1

Who: J1, J2, and J3 (a late appearance)
When: just before bedtime
What did we use: two sets of tangram pieces

J1 came up with a new game this evening. The rules:

  • number of players: 1 or more
  • playing pieces: 1 or more sets of tangram pieces
  • designer: each round, one player takes the role of the designer, putting the tangram pieces into a configuration. This could be a random arrangement or intentional
  • Taking a turn: in a clockwise order starting with the person to the left of the designer, players say what they think the tangram looks like from their perspective. After everyone has taken a turn, the players shift 90 degrees to their left and repeat the cycle, but this time they are looking at the tangram from a different orientation.
  • Once everyone has had a go from all 4 orientations, the next player becomes the designer
  • Advanced play: once someone has said what they think the tangram looks like from their perspective, the experienced players can add a comment to start building a story based on that object.
  • Winner: everyone!

We played with J1, J2, and J0 taking turns as the designer. To give you a feel for it, here is one of our designs from 3 different orientations:

Here are some of the ideas for what we saw: person jumping out of a box, a wheelbarrow, an army officer, a flower, an 8th note in a mirror, a catapult, a road grader, a knife cutting an apple, the sword in the stone, I was surprised that no one said "poop," which just shows how engaging the two of them found this activity. I doubt it would have been as successful if I introduced these rules and asked them to play!

Our own puzzle book

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