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Teacher's Stories - Archives

ThinkFun Games Challenge Thinkers of all Ages!

A teacher and her students bring ThinkFun games to a local retirement home!...more

ThinkFun Games Teach across Grades at Armbrae Academy!

A Canadian school incorporates game play into all classrooms, challenging and delighting students at all levels!...more

ThinkFun Games Build Pride and Self-Confidence in Strategies Lab

A school's Strategies Lab program uses ThinkFun games to help kids practice problem solving and talking about their thinking....more

ThinkFun Games Engage Every Type of Learner!

A second grade teacher shares her success bringing ThinkFun games into the classroom and giving her students a ew challenge....more

Students Engage with ThinkFun Games in Classroom Learning Centers

A teacher describes how incorporating ThinkFun games into classroom center time maximizes problem solving learning....more

ThinkFun’s GridWorks Game Enriches a High School Math Class Curriculum!

ThinkFun's GridWorks (now reinvented as Chocolate Fix) helps reinforce math skills in a high school Algebra classroom....more

ThinkFun Games Ignite Minds in a 7th Grade Math Class!

A teacher describes how classroom games provide new avenues for learners to succeed and build confidence!...more

A 5th Grade Math Teacher Uses Games to Motivate All Learners!

A teacher discusses the powerful learning that comes with integrating game play into the classroom...more

Sharpen Students' Thinking Skills with Brainteaser Puzzles!

A high school math teacher explains why begining each class with a brainteaser gets students ready to learn!...more

Problem Solvers Unite to Tackle the 36 Cube Challenge!

A teacher shares her experience challenging students to take on the 36 Cube puzzle. Here she describes the way her students rose to the challenge...more

Playing MathDice Makes Math Learning Fun!

A gifted specialist introduces MathDice to a middle school classroom and reignites students' enthusisam for math!...more

News Archives

Bill Ritchie & Andrea Barthello Interviewed by Global Toy News

Husband and wife team Andrea Barthello and Bill Ritchie are not only the founders of highly successful ThinkFun but two of the most fascinating p...more

Back to School, Back to Math Dice!

Get ready for the 11th annual Math Dice competition!...more

BigLeap, with ThinkFun CEO Bill Ritchie & Neuroscientist Silvia Bunge, Launches 1st Crowd-Funding Challenge for Social Good

BigLeap partners with ThinkFun CEO Bill Ritchie & Neuroscientist Silvia Bunge to launch first crowd-funding challenge platform for social good...more

Laser Maze and Zingo Sight Words win ASTRA Best Toys for Kids 2013!

American Specialty Toy Retailing Association names Laser Maze & Zingo Sight Words 2013 Best Toys for Kids!...more

Rush Hour Featured in Scientific American

Rush Hour featured in Scientific American MIND article on brain games...more

Hello Sunshine wins a Parents’ Choice Gold Award

Sunny looks great in gold! Hello Sunshine wins a Parents’ Choice Gold Award...more

WordARound a Top Ten Family Board Game in FamilyFun Magazine

FamilyFun Magazine features ThinkFun's new WordARound in Top Ten Family Board Games...more

First Logic Game With A Real Laser Among Innovative ThinkFun Games Debuting At Toy Fair

First Logic Game With A Real Laser Among Innovative ThinkFun Games Debuting At Toy Fair...more

ThinkFun is proud to partner with Asperkids to share the "Asperkids for All Kids" games collection

ThinkFun is proud to partner with Asperkids to share the "Asperkids for All Kids" collection...more

ThinkFun Celebrates Four Toy of the Year Award Nominations!

ThinkFun Celebrates Four Toy of the Year Award Nominations! - Vote for your favorite!...more

Good Housekeeping Names Yackety Smack a Best Toy 2012!

Yackety Smack Wins a Good Housekeeping Best Toy Award!...more

Run a ThinkFundraiser!

We put the FUN in Fundraising! Sell ThinkFun games and earn 40% for your organization....more

ThinkFun celebrates FIVE new awards from Oppenheim Toy Portfolio!

Five new ThinkFun games are awarded Platinum & Gold Awards from Oppenheim Toy Portfolio!...more

Turnstile Featured on The Today Show's "Toys That Teach" Segment with Stephanie Oppenheim

Turnstile on The Today Show! Named an award winner in "Toys That Teach" by Oppenheim Toy Portfolio...more

Roll & Play and UnHinged named Dr. Toy Best Picks 2012!

ThinkFun's Roll & Play and UnHinged games named 2012 Best Picks by Dr. Toy!...more

ThinkFun Announces Four New Education Games

ThinkFun announces the introduction of four products custom made for the classroom...more

ThinkFun’s Distraction game awarded TWO prestigious honors by Dr. Toy!

Distraction has been selected as a 2012 winner in Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Children’s Products and named one of Dr. Toy’s 10 Best Games! ...more

ThinkFun's Transparent Card Game Swish is CLEARLY a Winner!

Swish, ThinkFun's innovative spatial card game, is getting rave reviews!...more

Roll & Play and Rush Hour named ASTRA Best Toys for Kids 2012!

The American Specialty Retailing Association (ASTRA) names Roll & Play and Rush Hour Best Toys for Kids 2012!...more

Four ThinkFun Games Win 2012 Play Advances Language (PAL) Awards!

Four ThinkFun games are awarded 2012 PAL (Play Advances Language) Awards for supporting speech and language skills through play!...more

ThinkFun Spends a Day at the Cardboard Arcade!

Inspired by Caine's Arcade, a local elementary school created their own and invited ThinkFun to the grand opening!...more

ThinkFun Celebrates Creative Problem Solving at Destination ImagiNation Global Finals!

ThinkFun is thrilled to sponsor Destination ImagiNation and its mission to promote creative problem solving!...more

Distraction Reviews are Focused on Fun!

ThinkFun's new card game is designed to exercise working memory through play!...more

People Love PathWords Jr!

ThinkFun brings the fun of PathWords to younger players with this terrific new "logic puzzle meets word search" challenge!...more

Roll & Play™ is on a roll!

ThinkFun's first-ever toddler game is getting rave reviews!...more

ThinkFun’s Chocolate Fix App Available Now on iTunes

ThinkFun's new Chocolate Fix App is serious brain candy that’s addictively fun to play!...more

Ohanarama and ThinkFun Partner to Bring Award Winning Zingo! to Families Online

Ohanarama and ThinkFun Partner to Bring Award Winning Zingo! Game to Families Online...more

Four ThinkFun Games & Apps Honored with Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Awards!

New ThinkFun games (& an app!) receive Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Awards...more

USA Today article: "Kids: Have an 'appy Holiday" features Rush Hour: Holiday Edition

Rush Hour: Holiday Edition app is featured in USA Today...more

New York Times Travel: "Apps & Games to Keep Children Happy"

New York Times Travel article features Zingo! to Ga in it's listing of apps and games to keep kids entertained while traveling...more

Rush Hour: Holiday Edition – ThinkFun’s Newest Mobile App Available for a Limited Time Only!

ThinkFun releases a holiday version of the top-selling Rush Hour app with 400 all-new challenges!...more

ThinkFun Swish is a featured holiday gift in USA Weekend!

Parents' Choice & USA Weekend name ThinkFun Swish a top stocking stuffer for the holidays!...more

TOTY Toy of the Year - Vote Now!

Swish & Tilt have both been nominated by the Toy Industry Assoc. for Toy of Year 2012. Voting starts Nov 21st!...more

ThinkFun and MAA Host Second Annual Gathering for Gardner Celebration of Mind

Gathering for Gardner Honors Martin Gardner's Memory with Engagement in Logic Puzzles...more

Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Picks Children’s Products for 2011 Features Cartoon It! from ThinkFun

Dr. Toy announces her picks for the 100 Best childrens Products for 2011, including Cartoon It - ThinkFun's new memory drawing challenge!...more

PathWords Named 2012 Game of the Year by Games Magazine

ThinkFun's PathWords is named Best New Word Game for 2012 by Games Magazine...more

Dr Toy's Top 10 Best Creative Products for 2011 features Cartoon It!

Cartoon It! is one of Dr Toy's Top 10 Best Creative Products for 2011!...more

Toys & Games Build Skills as Kids Head Back-to-School

Toy Industry Assn. recommends MathDice, MathDice Jr, & PathWords to help build back to school skills!...more

What's Hot for Tweens and Teens: Toy Industry Association's top picks include ThinkFun's Rush Hour

A Toy Industry Association (TIA) Trend Expert highlights top picks for tweens and teens, including ThinkFun's Rush Hour game & app!...more

ThinkFun’s Rush Hour app wins an Editor’s Choice Award from Children’s Technology Review!

ThinkFun’s Rush Hour app wins an Editor’s Choice Award from Children’s Technology Review!...more

Stephanie Oppenheim of the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio shares her interview with Sam Ritchie, son of ThinkFun co-founders

Stephanie Oppenheim of the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio recently interviewed Sam Ritchie, son of ThinkFun founders Andrea Barthello and Bill Ritchie...more

PathWords Wins 2011 ASTRA Best Toys for Kids Award!

ThinkFun's newest logic game PathWords wins 2011 ASTRA Best Toys for Kids Award!...more

TILT makes the National Association for Gifted Children’s (NAGC) 2011 Recommended Toy List!

ThinkFun's TILT is included on the National Association for Gifted Children’s (NAGC) 2011 Recommended Toy List!...more

NOVA EXEC Magazine Feature: Barthello and Ritchie, Thinkfun Inc.

Northern Virginia Executive Magazine Features ThinkFun Founders Bill Ritchie & Andrea Barthello...more

ThinkFun’s Rush Hour is one of Babble’s Top 25 Android Apps for Kids

Online parenting magazine Babble.com recognizes ThinkFun's Rush Hour in "Top 25 Android Apps for Kids"...more

ThinkFun’s Award Winning 'Solitaire Chess' Mobile App Now Available for Android

Solitaire Chess Now Available for Android - A Creative Twist Combines Two Classic Games for a Fast Fun Challenge You Can't Put Down...more

ThinkFun's Solitaire Chess App Wins a Parents' Choice Gold Award!

Parents' Choice honors ThinkFun's Solitaire Chess app with a Gold Award!...more

ABC News: Mother's Day gift ideas segment features Chocolate Fix by ThinkFun!

Parenting columnist Meredith Sinclair features Chocolate Fix in a news segment on Mother's Day gift ideas!...more

ThinkFun: Mind Over Matter (Retailer Magazine)

Retailer Magazine profiles ThinkFun founders Bill Ritchie & Andrea Barthello as they share the company's history and vision for the future...more

The Today Show Features ThinkFun Games!

Today Show segment on Smart Toys for Smarter Girls & Boys features Zingo 1-2-3 & the Rush Hour logic puzzle by ThinkFun!...more

Bill Ritchie & Andrea Barthello Honored at Commonwealth Academy’s CARE Awards

2011 Leadership Award honors ThinkFun cofounders for creating games that inspire learning, spark creativity, & build problem solving through play...more

Smart Mouth Wins 2011 Play Advances Language (PAL) Award!

Smart Mouth game honored with a 2010 PAL Award (Play Advances Language) for supporting language development!...more

Treat Your Feet with Customized ThinkFun Sneakers!

We know ThinkFun fans have happy, playful brains... now the fun can extend all the way down to your toes! Get YOUR feet in on the fun!...more

Rush Hour played by veterans with brain injuries.

ThinkFun's iconic Rush Hour game was featured in a NBC segment on brain injury rehab for returning veterans...more

Solitaire Chess App Now Available!

Solitaire Chess is now available for iPhone, iPad, and iTouch! Simple to learn, impossible to master, and addictively fun!...more

Thanks for Voting ThinkFun!

Solitaire Chess & Math Dice Jr. are nominated for 2011 Toy of The Year awards!...more

S'Match wins a 2010 PAL (Play Advances Language) Award

S'Match honored with a 2010 PAL Award (Play Advances Language) for promoting language development!...more

A Very ThinkFun Halloween

ThinkFun employees celebrate Halloween with a "Dress as Your Favorite Game" costume party!...more

ThinkFun & MAA to Host a Reception in Honor of Martin Gardner's Celebration of Mind

ThinkFun celebrates Gardner's work & pursuit of a playful approach to mathematics, science, art, magic, life, literature, philosophy, and puzzles...more

What's GNU? and FlipOver win Teachers’ Choice for the Classroom Awards!

We have a winner... make that two! What's GNU? and FlipOver win Teachers’ Choice for the Classroom Awards!...more

Rush Hour recognized as a Best Seller by the Toy Directory!

Rush Hour recognized as a Best Seller by the Toy Directory!...more

ThinkFun Games Challenge Thinkers of all Ages!

Allison McGee teaches 7th and 8th grade math at All Saints Catholic High School in Kanata, Ontario.
 
I began using the ThinkFun games with my grade 7 and 8 students four months ago, and they are loving it! In fact, the first thing I usually hear from my students now is, "are we doing Game Club today?!" We usually use Game Club once every couple of weeks, and during each session we focus on developing a different social skill and problem solving skill.

In addition to the in-class Game Club, my school also has a math club that meets once a week at lunch, and our focus is the ThinkFun games the kids already know and love from Game Club. Both Game Club and math club now provide opportunities for students to work together, have fun, and develop their thinking skills all while playing great ThinkFun games!

I recently took my grade 7 math class on a field trip to a retirement home to share the ThinkFun Game Club games with the residents. This was a great success for everyone involved! Some of the residents simply enjoyed watching the students play the games, while others got right into solving the challenges themselves.
As a teacher, it was so rewarding to see my students interacting with the residents and sharing their knowledge of a particular game. The Game Club games were great conversation starters for the students and residents, and the discussions that naturally emerged as they played helped them get to know each other a little better.

 

This visit was a fantastic opportunity for my students to share the mind challenging games they've been using in Game Club with friends in a new community. What an incredible outreach experience for my students. This trip was a wonderful experience for everyone involved, and we hope to go back soon!

Article by Rick Nuthman. Posted Thu, 09/30/2010 - 15:04


NOW NATIONWIDE, ROBOT TURTLES™ BY THINKFUN® IS FIRST BOARD GAME TO TEACH CODING SKILLS TO KIDS AS YOUNG AS FOUR

Robot Turtles - The first board game for little programmers!

 

Kickstarter Success to Mass Availability Shows Support for Code Literacy & STEM Skills

 

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (August 11, 2014) – It was a Kickstarter sensation, graced the front page of the New York Times, garnered accolades from families, experts and educators, and today, Robot Turtles™ by ThinkFun®, the first board game to teach coding skills to kids as young as four, makes its national debut. ThinkFun is the world’s leading developer of addictively fun games that sharpen your mind like Laser Maze™, Rush Hour® and Zingo!®.

 

Awarded a “Best Toy for Kids” by the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association, Robot Turtles is now available at Target stores nationwide and on Target.com in addition to neighborhood toy stores, with a suggested retail price of $24.99. Robot Turtles was invented by Seattle software entrepreneur Dan Shapiro who wanted to spend quality time with his then four-year-old twins and share what he feels is the single greatest superpower – the skill of programming.  Robot Turtles began as a Kickstarter project where it became the most-backed board game in the history of the popular crowd-funding site. The Kickstarter goal to raise $25,000 and produce 1,000 games turned into $631,000 and 25,000 games as passionate parents from 65 countries kicked in support to make Robot Turtles a reality, and the game sold out.

 

With appeal to both boys and girls, a screen-free format and a concept that sneakily teaches coding and STEM skills while being silly with the family, Robot Turtles proved a perfect fit with ThinkFun’s mission to change the world through play. The company licensed Robot Turtles in January to bring it to families everywhere.

 

“Learning how to code is an essential 21st century skill and not just for designing apps and video games,” said Bill Ritchie, ThinkFun President and Co-Founder. “You learn how to break big problems into small steps, work backwards and visualize multiple solutions.  You learn to persevere, to experiment and be patient. Robot Turtles teaches these life essentials to the youngest kids who stand to benefit the most.”

 

“Kids naturally learn how to use computers,” said inventor Dan Shapiro. “But to create a new program to solve a problem – that means knowing how to speak to computers in their own language. I don’t care if my kids grow up to be programmers, chefs, or dancers. But whatever they do, if they know how to program, they will have better tools to help them do it.”

 

Robot Turtles is played with a grown up and up to four kids, ages four and up.  (Pre-Kindergarten to 2nd grade is the sweet spot!) Kids take the role of a programmer, playing cards to direct their turtle. The grown up takes the role of the computer, moving the turtle in response to the child’s every command. Kids quickly learn to maneuver their turtles to collect jewels and unlock new features like Lasers, Ice Walls, and the Function Frog. As kids create code, parents respond with goofy beeps, bops and zaps, eliciting shrieking delight and belly laughs. 

 

Parents can brush up on game play, check out reviews and learn more about the value of code literacy at ThinkFun.com/RobotTurtles.  Be sure to explore Adventure Quests, ThinkFun’s burgeoning online community where kids can dream up, build and share their own Robot Turtles adventures, complete with storytelling, photos and drawings.

 

# # #

 

 

About ThinkFun, Inc.

 

ThinkFun is the world's leader in addictively fun games that challenge your mind and inspire creative thinking. Nearly 30 years ago, ThinkFun was founded with a dream to change the world through play. ThinkFun continues to expand on that dream every day with games, mobile apps and global education programs. To learn more about ThinkFun, go to www.thinkfun.com.

 

 

36 Cube™ 

ASTRA Best Toys for Kids Award - 2009

Parents' Choice Gold Award - 2009

iParenting Media Awards Best Products of 2009

European award - 2009

 

Adams Cube™

Parents' Choice Gold Award - 2009

 

AHA! Rec-Tangle™

Parents' Choice Recommended Award Winner - 2009

 

Amaze™

Canadian Toy Testing Council 3-Star Rating - 2004

 

Block by Block® 

Parents’ Choice Honors Award - 1997

Dr. Toy Ten Best Children’s Games - 1996 

National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA), Honors Award - 1996

RE: Safety and CPSIA Compliance

Since 1985, ThinkFun has been developing games that ignite the minds of both children and adults alike. One of the core ingredients in creating ThinkFun games has always been to make sure that they are not only fun, but that they are safe to play with. We want to personally assure you that we have and will continue to take the necessary precautions so that our products meet the highest safety and quality standards.

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