Sprouts is another simple strategy game that requires only paper and pencil, yet has a surprising amount of depth.
Students draw a small set of dots to begin (even two dots is enough). The goal is to continue connecting those dots with lines. The first person who can’t make a connection loses.
- Connect two dots with a line (curvy is fine).
- Put a new dot somewhere on that line.
- ⚠️ Each dot can only have three lines connected to it.
- ⚠️ Lines may never cross each other.
- You lose when you can’t draw a line (this happens when the remaining dots already have three connections).
In the sample above, there is only one dot remaining in the end with fewer than three connections, so the blue player cannot make a new line and, thus, loses.
As always, the goal is to push students thinking. I want them to unpack the strategy, not just play the game. It is helpful to have them analyze a complete game to look for mistakes. Have them consider alternative moves that would lead to a victory.
Enjoy and do check out the entire category of paper and pencil strategy games at Byrdseed.TV!
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