The ball study has inspired so much game creation. We thought we’d give a slightly more traditional indoor ball sport a “spin.” Self-regulation skills and “sugar-words” are helping the children as they take turns and encourage their peers. Unlike true bowling, we only roll the ball once per turn. Using a handmade score card, the students mark the pins that were knocked over during their current frame or turn. Next, it is the bowler’s responsibility to reset the game for the following player.
This game was created without grown-up input. When they began inventing, each child had his or own game in mind. Soon, they realized that the resources were limited and four different games simply wouldn’t fit in the space. Discussions regarding rights to materials, who’s ball would roll first, the purpose of the props, and how to build the ramps flowed seamlessly between four engaged minds. A single game slowly began to emerge. The “aliens” (the hapless people standing in the middle of the blocks) were targets for balls rolling from three different vantage points. Each dropped in turn. The aliens had no hope of survival.