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March 24, 2015 / KingsIsle Community

3 Ways A Treasure Hunt Game Can Make Math Fun

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Arrr ye looking for a way to get your little Pirate to practice his or her math skills, perhaps without even realizing it? Send the lad or lass on a treasure hunt with math integrated into each clue!

Pirate Booty Treasure Hunt

Here’s a game to help your littlest Pirate with his or her counting skills! Hold a treasure hunt with written clues directing your child to various parts of the house, where booty can be counted and the next clue can be found.

A fun first clue could send the player to “the place where art is made,” with the instruction to gather six crayons. Inside the crayon box would be the next clue, pointing to someplace else in the house and telling them how many of the next object (beans from the pantry, pennies from the penny jar, even pebbles from the garden) to collect.

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Give your little Pirate a pillowcase in which to collect the goodies and clues so you can make sure he or she has counted everything correctly. Be sure to end the game with a cache of hidden treasure in the form of some sort of booty your little lad or lass will be delighted to keep! Counting will soon become his or her new favorite activity!

Numbered Treasure Hunt
Every Pirate knows that the best treasure hunts begin with a treasure map. This game is perfect for a young Pirate with more advanced math skills. Make a treasure map of the house with each room or area assigned a number. The map should also include the first clue, a math problem that your Pirate has to solve in order to get the number of the first room they need to visit.

Hide the next clue, which contains another math problem, in the area assigned to the numbered answer of the first clue. Your Pirate has to solve the problem, find the next clue, solve the next problem and so on. Set up 10 or 12 clues with math problems throughout the house, with the final clue leading to the booty (which should be well-hidden so it isn’t found by accident!).

Doubloon-Counting Treasure Hunt

An activity perfect for lads and lasses just learning to count money, this variation of the numbered treasure map treasure hunt will require your little Pirate to count coins rather than solve a math equation in order to find the next clue.

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Photo by Jeffrey

 

Take this into the backyard and draw a treasure map, with each area of the yard labeled with a monetary amount. The first clue will be a handful of coins that your child has to count out. Once he or she has come up with the total, the next step will be to check the map and find out what area of the backyard corresponds to that amount. In each area, hide a cache of coins that your child has to count in order to find out where to go next, until he or she finds the prize at the end of the hunt! This game will not only expand your child’s math skills, but will also help to reinforce the monetary amount of each type of coin in a fun and unique way!

Yo-ho-ho! Practicing math skills doesn’t have to be boring for your lads or lassies. Every Pirate loves a treasure hunt, and with the promise of booty at the end of their search, most scallywags will tackle these math problems with gusto!

March 19, 2015 / KingsIsle Community

What Spring Break Looks Like For a Gamer

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After a cold winter, daydreams of warmer weather and no school seem to be on every kid’s mind, especially yours. The thoughts of no homework, staying up late, and sleeping in during spring break are just enough to pull any kid out of that cold-weather rut. For most, this break is an opportunity to spend extra time with friends, go on a family vacation, or sit back and do absolutely nothing for seven days.

But for us gamers, the time away from school is especially awesome. You get to spend all of those extra hours getting lost in the world of your favorite video or computer game. Here is a typical day in life of a gamer during spring break:

After a long night of gaming, you get to sleep in way past your alarm. That is… until your mom bursts into your room and turns on the light.

You hop in the shower, but instead of singing your favorite shower tunes, all you can think about is what you need to get to the next level in Wizard101.

After your shower, you run downstairs for a quick breakfast. The faster you (or your parent!) can cook, the faster you can log in to your game and get your day started.

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When your brother comes into your room asking if he can borrow the computer to Google something, this is how you feel. Yeah right, bro!


At 1 p.m., you realize you’re still in your PJs. You don’t care.

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For lunch, you master the art of multitasking by holding a sandwich in one hand and your computer mouse in the other.

After lunch, your best friend calls and asks if you want to come over and quest some in Pirate101. Your response:

When said friend claims he’s better at the game than you, you’re just kind of like:

After 30 minutes of game time, you finallllllly defeat him, and this is your face:

By now, it’s 6 p.m. and your mom is forcing you to come home for dinner. How unfair! You guys were so close to beating the highest level!

After dinner, your mom and dad tell you it’s time to take a break from the games and encourage you to read a book for a little while. How dare they?!

After proving to your mom that you can survive a few hours without your game, she allows 30 minutes of play before bed. Yes! She’s the best!

But before you know it, those 30 minutes are over. You try to sneak some more game time in, but you can hear your mom coming up the stairs… Guess it’s time for bed before you get in trouble!

Until tomorrow!

March 16, 2015 / KingsIsle Community

KingsIsle visits the SXSW Gaming Expo

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On March 13, 2015 KingsIsle’s Community and Social Media team went downtown for the afternoon to check out the scene at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Gaming Expo in Austin, Texas.

The weather outside was perfect, but the real action was inside the Palmer Events Center in Downtown Austin where a ton of booths and “geek” entertainment could be found!

By the north entrance was a competitive gaming stage where players from around the world were competing for $20,000. By the south entrance there was a “Geek Stage” where there was always some kind of panel of guests talking about comic books, video games, cosplay, and gaming technology. In the middle was a huge area for playing board games, surrounded by vendors selling snacks and fun T-shirts. Upstairs were rows and rows of computers and gaming systems (both old and new) to keep expo goers playing games and having fun.

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Here’s what Tom, Leala, and Julia all had to say about their favorite parts of the afternoon:

Tom
I loved attending the Expo this year. For me my favorite parts would, first, be all the people I met (or saw) at the event and, second, the Competitive Gaming stage. It was my pleasure to meet Justin Burnham, the organizer for the event, and hear from him exactly how big the expo had grown over the past few years. Even more surreal was seeing Markiplier (of YouTube fame and the gaming emcee for the event) wander past us with lunch in his hands and asking Justin to help him find a quiet place to eat! Beyond that, it was just awesome to feed off the energy of the up and coming developers who were in attendance showing off their games in person. There was a lot of innovation being showed off that I was truly impressed with.

Before we headed down to the Expo, I spent a few minutes watching the live Twitch Stream of the Tournament Stage at the SXSW Gaming Expo. Then when I arrived and watched it in person, I just sat back in amazement at the skill these players were demonstrating. It made me think how awesome it would be to someday see our Wizard101 PvP players in some kind of competitive gaming match where all could watch.

Leala
This was my first time to attend the SXSW Gaming Expo and overall I was very impressed. The fact that the event is free and for all ages makes it very accessible to lots of gamers, which I think is great. I enjoyed the variety of the indie game section of the show floor, but my favorite part of the expo was the gaming history museum and free-play area. It was like an interactive history lesson, and a bit of a nostalgia trip too!

The free-play room on the second floor of the expo had games lined all around the outer wall. Each one had a different game and console set-up so you could start with the Atari, then move to the Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis and so on, all the way to the current generation of games. I had fun playing a bit of Frogger on the Atari, even though my skills at road-crossing are super rusty! Julia and I also had a rousing tournament of the fighting game, Tekken, on the original PlayStation. I used to be pretty good at button-mashing, but I was no match for Julia’s skills. I’ve never had so much fun getting absolutely trounced at a game before!

leala and julia

Julia
Going into the SXSW Gaming Expo, I had no idea what to expect. It was the first time I’ve been to anything of the sort, and it was a cool experience just to see the event in action. I was impressed to hear that people had traveled from all over to be in attendance or to host a table. One of the games we saw had come from Toronto, Canada!

My favorite part of the event was upstairs. There was a “History of Gaming” room set up with consoles from throughout the years, starting with an Atari Gaming Console. Of course I have seen pictures and heard about the Atari system, but I’ve never had the chance to see one in person or to play on one. We sat down and each tried our luck at Frogger, which I can’t say I was great at. But then we made our way down to a more recent console where Leala and I went head-to-head in a PlayStation Tekken tournament. I really had no idea what I was doing, so my plan of action was to hit random buttons as fast as I could. I crushed Leala over and over and by the end of our couple of matches, I was in tears of laughter. It was a great way to spend the day and learn a little more about a part of the gaming industry that I had not yet had the chance to see.

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We hope to see you at next year’s SXSW Gaming Expo! Who knows?! You may even see us manning our own booth next year where you could come by and say hello. Would you be interested in attending if you knew KingsIsle would have a presence there?