The Looney Academy
Where Learning is Fun!
At Looney Labs, we believe that teachers make a difference. Teachers are true heroes, each day touching the future as they teach. The Looney Academy strives to help teachers by providing quality content on the educational value of Looney Labs games.
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Games that have strong educational content or have been used successfully in classrooms.

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A list of all our lesson plans.

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An index of how our games compare to the US National Education Standards.

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Our trifold brochure with overviews of the educational content of our most popular games.

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Conferences that teachers might be interested in.

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The Teacher's Lounge
April '07 - Treehouse: It's not just a game!
  • Treehouse in the classroom - a math manipulative and logic building tool within a great game.
  • Treehouse Lesson plans and more.

  • Treehouse - the word conjures up thoughts of playing as a kid, having fun in the depths of a shady grove in the middle of a warm summer day. At least, that's what I think of. Fun and friends and playing until Mom calls you in for dinner.

    That's what Treehouse is - a game where friends can gather and play a great game for as short or as long as they want. Treehouse is a quick game - five to ten minutes, tops. But because Treehouse is so fun, I like playing it again and again and again. It combines the randomness of a die roll and enough strategy to make it "a real game" to me. A game has to give me choices, options, a reason for ME to be in the game to be any good. If a game is all luck, then just pit two random number generators against each other. But if it's all strategy - all planning and tactics and thinking 12 moves ahead... well, that's not a game I enjoy either. Treehouse is a nice blend of both luck and brains.

    The pyramids are wonderful math manipulatives - whenever I'm around kids, they can't stop stacking, unstacking, restacking, sorting, matching... it's uncanny how these wonderful game pieces draw kids in. Any good math lesson that uses manipulatives can be adapted to using the pyramids. I've heard some great stories of how the pyramids liven up a once-boring math lesson and bring new spark to the learning.

    With Treehouse, you've got not only a great set of manipulatives - you've got a game that teaches math without kids being aware of it. How often have you struggled with explaining congruent versus similar? How much easier is it to show the concept in play with the pyramids? Discuss symmetry, translations, transformations... all by using the language of the game - and then bring in the math terms after they have the concepts well in hand.

    To help with sparking your own creative uses in the classroom, check out the Treehouse Academy page for lesson plans and other ideas!

    Play the game, have fun. See how educational the simple game of Treehouse is - and then look for how educational OTHER pyramid games are in a future edition of the Teacher's Lounge here at the Looney Academy!

    P.S. Remember, the EcoFluxx Teacher's Special is good all the rest of this month. Buy 6 decks of EcoFluxx from our webstore and you'll get 30% off! Plus, you can order as many free EcoFluxx Pledge Cards as you can put to use in a good Earth-friendly way!

    If you have any suggestions on ways we can get the word out about this special to teachers everywhere - please let me know - or just forward a link to this page to any teacher newsgroup/websites you frequent.


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