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Date: 9 October, 2008
'Spot five clues that might tell you which disaster is likely to hit Felipe’s village in Nicaragua.'
This month, Suzanne Elvidge looks at ten games with a purpose
All games are free downloads or free to view online, and need the minimum of equipment. Some games require your browser to have a 'plug in' for Shockwave, Flash or Java.
To play a game, simply click on its name. If you are a parent, we advise you to try the game and the site it's on first before letting your kids play them, to make sure you're happy. Don't forget, you can also find great games for kids at Christian Aid's Global Gang website
When downloading games from the Internet, don't forget to keep your anti-virus and anti-spyware software up to date.
This month I’ve looked at games with a purpose – eight might make you think about subjects and situations, one might even raise some money – and the tenth – well, it’s just fun!
Spot five clues that might tell you which disaster is likely to hit Felipe’s village in Nicaragua – flood, earthquake or famine. Once you know what the scenario is, help the village to prepare. The thunderclaps are a bit startling if your speakers are turned up too high!
Help rescue boys who have been forced to make carpets in India in terrible conditions. Use your arrow keys to move around and collect the boys – if the overseer gets you he will kick you out. You can use the stairs but the boys can’t.
Play snakes and ladders against Mr Grabitall and help sort out things that aren’t fair. Sometimes the snakes cheat when you are in a hot zone (shaded squares) – answer a question right and they will stay still, or might even grab Mr Grabitall and slide him down. However, if you get one wrong you might slide all the way down.
Go Goat Go
Milk Lucky the goat (use the number keys across the top of the keyboard), pick up her poo by walking across it (use the arrow keys and mind the flies) and spread it around the vegetable plot to produce food for the village.
The Citizen Ship
The Global Gang has been blown out to sea – help them find their way home. You’ll need a (recycled) pencil and a piece of paper (why not use the back of an envelope) to note clues. Help the Gang to make a shelter by dragging and rotating pieces, catch fish (click the fish to cast and use the up and down keys to alter depth) and collect rainwater (use the arrow keys) and then use your clues to find your way home.
For every right answer in this word game, the website donates 20 grains of rice to the United Nations World Food Program http://www.wfp.org/. You can answer questions on art, chemistry, English, geography, languages and maths. The website warns that, “This game may make you smarter. It may improve your speaking, writing, thinking, grades, job performance...” There are similar sites, such as Charitii.com http://charitii.com/, which donates grain, water or education, or helps the rainforest, Free Flour http://freeflour.com/, which donates a spoon of flour for each correct answer, and others
This competition-winning game shows you how Fairtrade helps cocoa bean farmers. Collect cocoa beans, save Choca from the Chocolate Monsters and steal their beans, and then sell the beans at the fair-trade stall. Use the left and right arrow keys to walk left and right, and the up key to jump.
What Would You Do?
A game from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution that gets you thinking about situations you could get into on the coast and what you might do.
Keep your student fed, watered, happy, studious and solvent for a week by guessing and typing any of the 52 commands (type ‘commands’ to see how many you have found). Be aware your student may not always listen (sound familiar). In Student Survivor 2, you have to get all the way through to graduation, keeping the balance between studying and socialising, and even watching your bank balance.
Doesn’t teach you anything, but it is silly! Prepare for Red Nose Day 2009 http://www.rednoseday.com/ by seeing how many red noses you can save from the pencil points. Use your mouse to move the paddle and bounce them from one side of the screen to the other.
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