How to Make a Catapult Game

Per leggere questo post in italiano, cliccate qui.

There is something so fun about flinging things in a catapult. Did you know you could use them to learn English too?  We’ve turned ours into a counting game and here’s how:

Step 1:  Gather your supplies:

  • 5-8 popsicles sticks
  • 4 rubber bands
  • a cap from a plastic bottle
  • acorns
  • a cardboard egg carton
  • pens
  • tempera paints
  • small pieces of paper (we used a large hole punch to cut out circles, but squares, triangles, dodecahedrons, etc will work fine)

Step 2: Paint each of the holders a different color.

Step 3: Write numbers 1 – 9 on small scraps of paper.  (This number depends on how many places for eggs your carton has).  Once the tempera is dry, place the numbers inside each of the holes.

Step 4:  Decorate your acorns.

Now to make your catapult.  There are a million ways to make a catapult, we combined a few ideas to make an easy to follow idea using this we had around the house.  Here’s how we did it:

Step 5:  Stack 2 popsicle sticks one on top of the other and bind at one end with a rubber band (let’s call this Stack A).  Make another stack of 2-4 popsicle sticks and bind both ends with rubber bands (let’s call this Stack B).  Make sure the rubber bands are wrapped fairly tight so that the sticks don’t slip.

Step 6:  Open Stack A and slide Stack B in between the two sticks.

Step 7:  Use another rubber band to bind the two stacks together, making an ‘x’ where the two stack intersect.  Glue the cap on.

Step 8:  Put an acorn into your catapult and have fun playing your game!

Challenge – if you are already pretty good at saying your numbers, you could make this into a math game and start adding up your points!

Numbers Slam

Preparation: Print off 4 copies of each sheet, laminate and cut out.

Deal out all of the cards.  Without looking at the cards, each player makes a deck in front of him(or her)self.  One at a time players flip over a card and puts it next to their face down deck.  The card should be flipped over away from the player (toward the circle) to give everyone a fair chance to see the card.  This goes on until there is a pair turned face up, the player that identifies the pair, slaps the center of the table and says slam.  He (or she) says what the pair is (4, 17 etc) and gains that pair (and puts it on the side). This goes on until all the cards are gone from the face down deck.  At this point, players leave their top face up card on the table, but take all the other cards and put them face down. Play continues like this until all the cards, it is impossible to turn over any more pairs.The player with the most cards at the end of the game is the winner.

Happy slamming!