When It Happens Panel Get involved: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting 'OXFORD NEWS' to 80360 or email
Bringing in Zombies to make maths seem a lot more fun + Audio
ZOMBIES are normally killed off in a brutal, bloody way.
But a new game taking over Oxfordshire schools involves a rather more civil way of wiping out the creatures.
It’s the brainchild of father-of-three Matthew Tidbury, from Didcot who has designed the zombie invasion board game, to help children master maths.
The 50-year-old of Lydalls Road, who says he designed the world’s first cordless kettle when he was 18, has been testing out The City of Zombies with pupils at Blewbury Primary School, Manor Primary School in Didcot, and Wantage Primary School.
And he’s hoping to invade the rest of the county.
He said: “It is really fascinating to watch kids play the game and the see way they are thinking about numbers.
“The children who don’t like maths are actually doing complicated calculations in their heads without even realising it.
“I developed it because when my daughter was at school she really struggled with maths so I wanted to make it fun.
“I am not very good at maths, that’s the irony of this, and when I saw Laura struggling the way I did, I thought there must be a better way.”
Mr Tidbury started designing the game four years ago – and last month his 16-year-old daughter Laura passed her maths GCSE with a C grade at Wallingford School.
She said: “I love the game, it brings maths alive and makes it simple for me.”
Laura is now able to follow her dream of studying music at college.
The game, which can be played individually or as a team, is designed for six-year-olds as a defence game using cards and three dice.
The idea is you have survived an apocalypse and try to protect the last survivors from a zombie attack.
Mr Tidbury was at Wantage Primary School yesterday to trial the game.
Teacher Jo Staples said: “It was fantastic – the children loved it and it helped them develop their numeracy skills.”
The game is due to go into production in the next two weeks and is set to go on sale in mid-November for £24.99.
It can be pre-ordered for less at cityofzombies.com To test out the game, Mr Tidbury will be at Oxford’s board game cafe Thirsty Meeples in Gloucester Green next Saturday and again on October 12 from 9am until 11am.
Mandy Langton, who teaches at The Manor School in Didcot, said: “The kids had so much fun they didn’t even realise they were playing a maths game, and if they did they didn’t seem to mind.”
The Wallingford-born designer said he won the Royal Society of Arts bursary for designing the world’s first cordless kettle.
The kitchen appliance started rolling out across the UK 18 months later.
By the age of 30 he was one of the youngest fellows to be accepted into the Royal Society of Arts and now runs his own design consultancy, ThinkNoodle Ltd.
HOW IT WORKS
THE aim of the game is to survive wave after wave of advancing zombies until you are rescued.
Players take turns rolling dice and explore calculation strategies to target and remove zombie cards from play.
Between one and three zombies can be removed per player per turn.
Once all players have rolled dice, remaining zombie cards move down one level and the next zombie wave appears at the top.
If six Zombies reach the bottom of the board the game is lost.
Comments are closed on this article.