Uno: the card game, but with a twist

Uno: adjusting the game to fit all players

Everyone likes a game of Uno. I adjust my version of Uno to the age of the children playing it.

Every player starts the game with 7 cards. None of the other players should see the cards. All the remaining cards are placed in the middle of the table. The first card is placed next to the pile and then the game begins. The first player needs to match this card by color, number or the same symbol. They can also use one of the special cards. When a player has only one card left, he needs to yell Uno! If they forget this, they have to take extra cards. Once a player has no cards remaining, he is the winner of the game.

There are four special cards:
1) all colors card:
With this card you can change the color of the cards.
2) skip a turn card:
When you place this card, the next player has to skip a turn.
3) + cards:
When you place this card, the next player has to take +2, +4 or +6 cards.
4) question mark card:
With this card, you can choose what your next action will be.

Changing the game

Depending on the age of the players, you can change the game:
– You can adjust the amount of numbers you are working with. For younger children, you can work with the numbers they have learned like 1, 2, 3. With older children, you can add extra numbers like 8, 9, 10.
– You can adjust the way you show the numbers. In this card game, I used images in the form that numbers are shown on a dice. You can also use written numbers like 1, 2, 3 or numbers by using squares.

– You can adjust the special cards. For younger players, it’s better not to use all the special cards, because it can be difficult for them to understand. For the older players, you can add extra cards or by using the question mark card you can stimulate them to use their imagination and invent a new card.
– You can also add new elements to the game. For example a card with an assignment with a game of a minute to win it. When they complete the assignment, they can put two cards away. When they don’t they have to take two cards extra.

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s game for me!

Pirate’s ship race

In this pirate’s ship race, the children play with their own ship and have to race each other in order to get to the treasure chest. But there are also traps in the game. So will they win the race or will they be cursed?

Each pirate chooses their color of ship and places it on the compass. The players take turns in rolling the dice. Then they have to look at the color they have thrown and put the ship on the same color. There is also a  purple color on the dice, because of this they have to skip a turn. The players also have to watch out for the curse in the game. When a player has a space with a treasure chest on it, they have to open it and take out a coin without looking. When they get a golden coin, they can keep it. But there are 3 other coins that have a curse on them:
– green: You have to put a golden coin back in the treasure chest.
– blue: You have to go 5 steps back.
– red: You have to switch with the person behind you.

The ship that reaches the treasure chest first, get’s to keep all the golden coins in it and is the winner of the game.

workshop erika van tielen

Customized workshop for Erika Van Tielen

Playful learning in first grade

Before I had this blog, I also did workshops. I made a workshop for Erika Van Tielen about the skills the children learn in first grade. It was about how you can practice them in a playful way. In the article above she made a post about the way she experienced my workshop. It’s in dutch, so if it’s not a possibility to translate the page, I will be more than happy to translate it for you. Enjoy the article!

Sidewalk chalk only for the sidewalk? No way!

Experiment with sidewalk chalk

We use sidewalk chalk mainly to color outdoors. In this post, I will describe 5 activities that you can do with sidewalk chalk on a rainy day.

1) Painting with grated sidewalk chalk
Together with the children, you are going to grate the chalk by using a sieve or a grater. You put the chalk in a bowl per color. Then you take a dry paint brush and dab it in the chalk. Next you can start to “paint” with it.

2) Making contours
I placed my hand on a white paper. With a paintbrush, I dab in the chalk and place it all around my hand. To see a clear contour, you will have to repeat this a couple of times.

3) Making prints
I chose a shoe where you can see a print at the bottom of it. With a paintbrush, I spread the chalk over it. After that, I turned the shoe carefully on the paper and pressed it against it. When you take the shoe off the paper, you can see it’s print.

4) Playing with letters
First of all, you are going to “draw” the letter with glue. Then you sprinkle the chalk over the glue and press it against the paper. Afterwards, you shake off the reamaining chalk, and then the letters will appear.

5) Bodypaint
You can also use the chalk to bodypaint. First you draw a figure with a paintbrush. After that, you shake off the remaining chalk. You repeat this a couple of times until you can see the color clearly. Thus you can bodypaint all kinds of figures on your arms, legs, face or other body parts.