Purpose Games: Old Dog Learns New Tricks

Thanks for the intro to Purpose Games, Michael. I’m going to add a link to the site on our patron computers and on the children’s tablets we recently bought for the library.

I’d also like links to specific games kids of various ages might like – I think I’ll ask the teens on the new Teen Advisory Committee to take this on as a project, rating games and creating their own (I hope they like some of the reading and math games). This may attract a few more teen members (we’re also using short film making as a core project for them). I know a lot of our teen girls will like the games about horses.

Playing and making games might also be a good learning project for older folks wanting to learn how to use the computer. As long as there isn’t a great need for excitement, they are enjoyable learning tools.

The games are easy to create – if there’s a subject you want others (or yourself) to learn about. I dashed off a quick “where in Val library is this?” set of multiple choice questions, but it could be fun to do a shapes game, using a screenshot of the library layout created in Excel to plan our recent reorganization. And I can see using that sort of game to help our volunteer teen shelvers learn where everything goes. Here is the link to that multiple choice game I created:


In addition to some library related games and English grammar games, I tried a number of the geography games – and, yes, I  learned from them, as geography has not been my strong suit. I like the shapes games best – I remembered things better after playing them than after playing the multiple choice games.

All in all, purpose games is a better way to waste time than solitaire. Anything that makes me think and try to remember is good.


2 thoughts on “Purpose Games: Old Dog Learns New Tricks

  1. Christa Burns

    Actually, I wrote this month’s Thing. Michael and I take turns creating the Nebraska Learns 2.0 Things.

    Those are some GREAT ideas you came up with for ways to use the games with both your younger and older users! I hope they enjoy them and learn something too.

    I played your game, and of course, since I don’t know your library, i didn’t do very well. 🙂 Only got 33% correct. Oh well! I’m sure your regulars will do much better. Good game!


    1. mariafromval Post author

      I didn’t know there were TWO of you dreaming up this fun stuff for us! I’ve been enjoying the things this year. They seem much more creative and useful than I expected they would be. Thanks much! – maria



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