Our favourite resource this week was a charity shop find – the game Mastermind.
Mastermind is a logic game in which one player (the codemaker) places four differently coloured pegs (out of a possible eight colours) in a row, and the other person has up to twelve chances to crack the code.
The codemaker gives feedback by scoring each guess according to how many pegs of the correct colour it contains, and how many of those are also in the correct position.
I was amazed at how educational this game is – something I hadn’t noticed at all when I played it as a child. Playing recently my brain has at times felt quite scrambled figuring out the logic of my next guess!
One of the reasons Mastermind works so well in our house is because it’s not directly competitive. The codebreaker’s goal is to crack the code in as few guesses as possible and although theoretically the codemaker’s goal is for the code not to be guessed at all, in practice we were all rooting for the codebreaker!
If you don’t have the game, you can play Mastermind with pen and paper. There’s also an online version and a free iPhone app. A great way to develop logic skills and have fun together at the same time.