Marble games are an excellent way to strengthen your child’s ability to focus on a single activity. The games are filled with strategy, easy to play and lots of fun. One of the great benefits of marble games—if you play them regularly–is that they encourage your child to practice by herself. This promotes self-motivated learning and builds your child’s confidence in her own abilities. Here are several games your child can play on her own:
Game One – Walk the Dog
To play this game you need three marbles and an open, carpeted area (a 6′ x 9′ rug works perfectly).
1) Sit on one end of the play area.
2) Directly in front of you, make a triangle with three marbles. Space the marbles approximately six inches apart. (Figure 1)
3) Shoot the marble that is closest to you through the other two. (Figure 2)
4) Now you have a new triangle. Again, shoot the marble that is closest to you through the other two.
5) Continue with this procedure.
6) If you are unable to shoot the closest marble through the other two, or if you shoot your marble off the side of the play area, you are disqualified. Start over.
7) The objective is to make it to the opposite end of the play area in as many turns as possible. (The more turns it takes you, the more control you demonstrate.)
(Strategy: Try to keep the triangle small. The bigger it gets, the more difficult it is to complete the next turn.)
Game Two – Count the Clicks
To play this game you need five marbles.
1) Shoot one marble a foot or so away from yourself.
2) Shoot a second marble and try to hit the first marble. If you do, count that as one click.
3) Shoot your third marble. Try to hit or cause the target marbles to collide. Count the clicks and add it to your total.
4) Shoot your fourth marble. Count the clicks and add it to your total.
5) Shoot your fifth marble. Count the clicks and add it to your total.
6) Remember your score. See if you can beat the score in your next game.
(Strategy: Try to shoot softly so the target marbles stay bunched together.)
Marble games offer good old fashioned fun for kids. Wonderfully simple in nature, these games are easily adapted to all skill levels. Best of all, marble activities invite countless variations, so it should come as no surprise when your child announces that she is inventing a new game. (Again!)