Teach Through Games: Chickyboom

Teach Through Games: Chickyboom

Age level: Preschool, Early Elementary

Description: The goal of Chickyboom is simple – collect as many chickens, hay bales, and wagon wheels as you can without making the perch fall. Each item is worth a different point value, and the player with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Try to remove one chicken, wagon wheel, or hay bale without knocking down the whole perch. But be careful to keep everything in balance!

Try to remove one chicken, wagon wheel, or hay bale without knocking down the whole perch. But be careful to keep everything in balance!

Set up is also relatively easy. Just place the items on the perch at random, then you’re ready to go. Play is quick, and many young learners love the anticipation of seeing the perch fall.

Skills & Modifications: This game requires few modifications for most students. I appreciate that the instructions included with Chickyboom provide rules for playing with children who don’t yet add or for playing independently, making it easier for you to find the best fit for your learner.

Peer Play/Turn-Taking – Since many of my students are entertained by seeing things fall down, this is a great game for peer play because they are more motivated to attend to other players’ turns.

Accepting Mistakes/Errors – An error in this game results in the entire perch falling down, and due to the fact that each round of play is pretty quick, a new game can be set up for learners to try again after making a mistake.

Oops! If you pick up the wrong item and the perch is unbalanced, it might just all fall down!

Oops! If you pick up the wrong item and the perch is unbalanced, it might just all fall down!

Motor Skills – This is a great game for practicing pincer grasp. It’s also good for motor control, because if players are too rough with their movements, the whole perch will fall down.

Cause and Effect – This is a very natural way to bring up early skills related to cause and effect. Kids typically enjoy talking about what happened to cause the perch to fall, which allows for practice, as well as modeling, of the expressive langauge skills.

Addition/Subtraction – At the end of the game, everyone adds up the number of points they got for removing chickens, hay bales, and wagon wheels. The person who made the perch fall has to subtract five points from their total.

Each wagon wheel is worth 1 point, hay bales are worth 3 points, and the chickens are worth 2 or 3 points depending on their size.

Each wagon wheel is worth 1 point, hay bales are worth 3 points, and the chickens are worth 2 or 3 points depending on their size.

Recognizing left and right – For learners who have experience with this game and enjoy it a lot, I can model for them how to talk about right and left. For example, I might say, “Oh, I think you should try to get the chicken on the right” or “It looks like the perch is leaning to the left, what should you do?”

Pros: As usual, Blue Orange puts out games with high quality materials. I love that this game is so simple to explain that I can introduce it to most of my students, but it also provides an avenue to practice higher level skills.

Cons: When first setting it up, it may take 1-2 minutes. So if you have a learner who finds wait time very difficult, you may want to set it up on your own while they’re engaged in another activity.

chickyboomCost: $24.99 You should invest in this game if: you are seeking good games for peer or sibling interaction, looking for games to practice fine motor skills, or have a learner who is highly motivated by seeing things fall down.

ABLLS: A10, K15, Z6, Z13, Z25

VB-MAPP: N/A

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