The Perfect Patterning Strategic Game
for All Ages
By Guest Blogger: Kim G.
In need of a game that combines math skills, a lot of fun, and pushes kids’ strategic thinking as well? With simple directions that make play quick and easy to learn, Qwirkle is just the game for you and your school, classroom, or home.
Qwirkle comes with 108 wooden tiles that have six different shapes that are each in six different colors. The object of the game is for players to add to the patterned chains of tiles of either all one color or all one shape. No duplicates are allowed in a line. When a line is made of all the six shapes in one color or a line completed of the same shape in all six colors, it is called a “Qwirkle” and players score bonus points.
So, what makes Qwirkle a fantastic math game?
Players are working on strategizing and recognizing patterns in the chains of tiles to get the maximum amount of points on their turn. In addition, they are working on their mental math skills as well when they add their scores each round. While the scoring aspect took a bit for the students to catch on, once they did it really motivated them to continue to look for the optimal play.
Another great aspect of Qwirkle is that it can be used as hands-on manipulatives outside of the game. It is the perfect tool for students to use to complete and make patterns. You can use it for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division problems as well. All ready to go for you.
Working with multiple leveled students? Or, need a game for when the whole family gets together and there are multiple age groups of kids? Qwirkle will challenge the 5 year to the teen to the adult. No reading skills required in order to play.
While I focused on my second grade students at my school specifically learning how to play Qwirkle, I can see the benefit and use of using this even with preschoolers in their shape recognition, basic patterns, sorting, and grouping. It would be a game to invest in that would grow with them…a hard feat when it comes to games from my own personal experience with my boys.
Some side notes I found that worked well in my classroom setting:
- We had both the travel-size Qwirkle and regular Qwirkle set for students to use. We all liked the travel set better as it fit our tables well. We never ran out of space.
- We were able to use tile holders from another game so we could organize and move the tiles around for play possibilities easily without others seeing what we had.
- I would recommend players either playing in groups of 3 either individually or with a partner. Any more students than that took too long for their next turn, and I found that their attention drifted a bit.
Qwirkle is a great game that can grow with your kids or students, can be used in a variety of ways outside of the game, and works on so many skills at once.
Kim is nine year veteran elementary and middle school educator as well as a mom to two elementary-aged boys. Currently, she is teaching a class at an elementary school called LOGIC where students work on life skills, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking through games and hands-on activities. She works the entire Kindergarten through 5th grade student body.