ThisBox - Thinking Skills Gamebox

A solution by Icebreaker submitted to Gamification in education

ThisBox is a box with games with challenges that can be solved with different thinking skills. The game players are doing "brain fitness" for better thinking skills: creative & critical thinking, systems thinking, deductive & inductive logic, understand fallacies & cognitive biases, decision making, persuasion & argumentation and problem solving - many of these are 21st century must haves!

(Pitched: 15/04/2018)

One Page Summary

ThisBox is a standalone solution for thinking skills development. The challenge is that youth don’t have the opportunity to develop thinking skills for life and find it hard to filter information (facts from opinions, prejudices from fairness etc.). Decision making is paralyzing for them. Better thinking skills could help them think on their own, make sound life choices that suit them, become autonomous adults that consciously contribute to their community. ThisBox is a practical collection of games: card games, board games, roleplaying games etc. The games are from simple to complex and aim to develop better thinking skills as listed in the Abstract of this pitch. All the games fit in a box, come with a “rules guide” and can be played alone, in a small group of friends (without an adult) or in bigger groups with a facilitator (game master, trainer, teacher, coach, psychologist, etc.). ThisBox will have an affordable price and playing the games can be done with or without an adult, the games can be bought also separately to develop only a skill. We have over 15 years designing complex learning games, deploying a game-based learning solution. We also have experience in scaling projects – Armina being one of the main actors in the development of GROW from pilot into a multi-year program for 3000 youth/year in over 20 cities. There are no competitors right now offering such a solution and this solution is original and unique. A smaller-scale version of the solution has been tested in our project “Impresario” (a 5 games collection for entrepreneurial skills) and it’s very attractive for the youth. The strengths of ThisBox are: its modularity, the fact that it’s easy to scale, it’s attractive for the target group. The weaknesses could be: it takes longer to create a cool and useful learning game than to design a classic workshop, maybe the adults (who should be “game trainers” for bigger groups) might not enjoy playing so much or find it difficult to connect the classic theory about e.g. critical thinking with a game – so we need to carefully identify adults that love games and learning and have (are willing to gain) knowledge about the various thinking skills. To enable scalability, we will create a “Train the game trainer” guide and will prepare volunteers to become game trainers to play the games from ThisBox with as many youth as possible. The guide can be bought together with attending a “Train the game trainer” preparation program (or offered for free if funding exists).