There are thousands of classroom games, but few create more exuberance than a well designed round of Mind Soccer.
Draw a horizontal line along the bottom of your whiteboard and mark it off in five equally spaced vertical lines, hash marks. This is your Mind Soccer field. Place an eraser below the middle hash mark. The eraser, of course, is the soccer ball.
Prepare a list of 50 or so short answer questions, reviewing important class material.
The top number in a fraction is _______.
The longest river in Africa is ________.
Robin Hood lived in ________.
Divide your class into two teams … girls against boys works wonderfully. Flip a coin to determine which team starts.
Fire a question at the winning team. They shout back the right answer. You move the eraser slightly toward the opposing team’s goal. The ball is moving down the field! What a good kick! Attackers cheer … defenders groan … loudly!
Another question for the attacking team … another right answer … the eraser ball moves down the field. Cheering! Groaning!
You fire another question … right answer … but too slow! The other team wins possession! You fire questions at them. The ball, ah yes!, moves the other way! Ha! Ha! Former cheerers are groaning now … and former groaners cheer! Back and forth! Back and forth!
Wait … what was that? Someone complained?
The teams learn the One Dreaded Rule of Mind Soccer. Keep the Ref happy! The complaining team is penalized. However you want. The ball is moved … or a free kick is awarded … or a point is deducted. None dare complain. Keep the Ref happy!
Eventually, a goal is scored … pandemonium breaks out. The game continues.
Mind Soccer can be a reward for anything … everyone turned in their homework! Hurray! The class advanced to the next Scoreboard level! Hurray! Our test average is over 75%! Hurray! We win three minutes of Mind Soccer!!!
Use a timer. The shorter the game, the more your kids will beg you to play again.
Contemplate this. Your students will work hard on any class goal for the mere privilege of playing a game that reviews course material!
Want to take student involvement over the moon? After an especially intense game of Mind Soccer, award everyone a star on the Super Improvers Ladder.
Your students don’t dig soccer? Call it Mind Football.
To download the full description of Mind Soccer, click the image above.