Title:
Board game
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An educational board game includes a planar game board having printed thereon a movement path consisting of a contiguous series of numbered spaces. Various groups of spaces are set to receive panels from a “Theme Pack.” The “Theme Pack” itself is comprised of character image panels, illustrated panels, instruction panels and question cards directly related to a given book or subject matter. Different “Theme Packs” can be used with the same game board in order to incorporate multiple books and accommodate different age groups. A magnetic interaction between the game board and panels ensures that the latter remain in position on the board. The method of play involves correctly answering questions related to a given book or “Theme Pack” in order to advance along the movement path from start to finish.



Inventors:
Davis, Terry William (Aurora, CA)
Davis, Cathy Rose (Aurora, CA)
Davis, Jordan Howard (Aurora, CA)
Application Number:
11/436663
Publication Date:
12/07/2006
Filing Date:
05/19/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F3/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MENDIRATTA, VISHU K
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Terry William Davis (Aurora, CA)
Claims:
What is claimed is;:

1. A board game for playing a game related to a selected theme and comprising; a game board having printed thereon a movement path composed of a plurality of numbered spaces; a random play movement selector; a plurality of game pieces; a plurality of tokens; and, a “Theme Pack” of question and answer cards related to said selected theme.

2. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said movement path originates at space number 1 designated as “Start Area,” follows the numerical sequence of the spaces from 1 to 32 and ends at space number 32 designated as “The Winner Area.”

3. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said movement path contains a first group of spaces, bearing a pattern of colored diagonal lines, which are set to receive corresponding panels that contain instructions for movement of a game piece.

4. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said movement path contains a second group of spaces, bearing a grid pattern, which are set to receive corresponding panels that contain instructions for movement of a game piece.

5. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said movement path contains a third group of blank spaces which are set to receive corresponding panels that are illustrated with scenes from said selected Theme.

6. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said movement path contains a fourth group of spaces designated as “Take a Question Card” spaces.

7. The board game of claim 1, wherein space number 1 on the said movement path is set to receive an illustrated panel corresponding to the “Start Area.”

8. The board game of claim 1, wherein space number 32 on the said movement path is set to receive an illustrated panel corresponding to “The Winner Area.”

9. The board game of claim 1, wherein space number 33 on the said game board is set to receive a “Theme Identification” panel bearing the title of a given book and hence, “Theme Pack.”

10. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said “Theme Pack” is comprised of a plurality of instruction panels, a plurality of illustrated panels, a plurality of question cards, a plurality of character image panels, one “Theme Identification” panel, one “Start Area” panel and one “The Winner Area” panel.

11. The board game of claim 10 wherein wherein said question cards have questions related to said theme and instructions for movement of a game piece in the event of correct and incorrect answers printed on the front side of the cards, and answers printed on the back side of the cards.

12. The board game of claim 10, wherein the said theme panels have a magnetic base.

13. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said game board has a metallic material incorporated within it.

14. The board game of claim 1, wherein the said method of playing an educational game involves correctly answering questions related to a given book or “Theme Pack” in order to advance along the said movement path from start to finish.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION.

The present invention relates to a board game, and more specifically to a board game with a series of themes related to specific books, that serves the dual purpose of being both educational and entertaining for children, and for others.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Board games that are intended as learning tools for children have previously been described. U.S. Pat. No. 5,860,652, which issued to Ruff on Jan. 19, 1999, discloses a board game having a movement path along which players advance their game piece from a starting point to a finishing point. Each player may advance their game piece upon correctly answering a randomly selected question from a plurality of question cards. The board game is designed for young children, in that questions printed on the aforementioned question cards test the player's ability to recognize colors, shapes and letters of the alphabet.

A similar method of play whereby players advance along a movement path upon correctly answering a randomly selected question from a plurality of question cards was disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 4,932,666, which issued to Corle on Jun. 12, 1990. As described therein, the playing surface of the board itself is illustrated with a geographical map of the United States and questions printed on the aforementioned question cards relate to American history and geography.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,991,854, which issued to Weiss on Feb. 12, 1991, discloses a board game that similarly comprises a board having a continuous movement path and a plurality of question cards. The board game described therein is intended to improve children's language skills by testing a player's knowledge of figurative expressions commonly used in the English language.

The prior art discloses board games that are each ideally suited to a narrow age range and intended to test a player's knowledge of a particular subject matter. Such games focus on the recollection of specific information without stimulating the development of other cognitive skills such as comprehension, application or analysis.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In view of the foregoing, the purpose of the present invention is to develop a board game that is adaptable to different age groups and functions as both a source of entertainment and a teaching tool for cognitive skills such as comprehension and critical thinking.

Preferably the game has one or a series of themes that are related to specific books, and test the knowledge of the players, in relation to that book, or books. Many different books can be used as themes for parts of the game, as will become apparent below. The books can be works of fiction, plays, or even non fiction. The books will be known to, or have been studied by, the players, prior to playing the game.

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, an educational board game comprises a planar game board having printed thereon a contiguous series of numbered spaces. The movement path originates at a space designated as “Start Area,” follows the numerical sequence of the spaces and ends at a space designated as “The Winner Area.” A first group of spaces on the board bear a pattern of green-colored diagonal lines and are set to receive corresponding panels that contain instructions for movement of a game piece. A second group of spaces on the board bear a pink-colored grid pattern and are set to receive corresponding panels that also contain instructions for movement of a game piece. A third group of spaces on the board are blank and set to receive corresponding panels which are illustrated with scenes from a given book. A fourth group of spaces on the board are blue-colored and designated as “Take a Question Card” spaces. A fifth space on the board is designated as “Theme Area” and is set to receive a panel bearing the title of a given book. The “Start Area” and “The Winner Area” are also set to receive corresponding illustrated panels.

The educational game further comprises random number selector such as dice, and calculator, or a simple spinner. The game also has game pieces, tokens and a “Theme Pack.” A “Theme Pack” relates to a given book and is itself comprised of one “Theme Identification“ panel, one “Start Area”panel, one “The Winner Area” panel, a plurality of instruction panels that correspond to the first and second group of spaces on the board, a plurality of illustrated panels that correspond to the third group of spaces on the board, a plurality of question cards and a plurality of character image panels which can be affixed to the aforementioned game pieces.

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, the board has a metallic material incorporated within it and all “Theme Pack” panels have a magnetic base so that they remain in position once placed onto the game board.

The character image panels also have a magnetic base which allows them to be affixed to the metallic upper portion of the game pieces.

The “Theme Pack” can be varied in order to change the book or subject matter of the game while keeping the rules of the game constant. Thus, the same game board can be used with different “Theme Packs”, each of which relate to a different book, or subject. This advantageously allows the board game to be adaptable to different age groups and to be used as a learning tool for different cognitive skills, depending on the nature of the questions printed on the question cards provided with each “Theme Pack”, and of course the subject matter of the book itself. Furthermore, once a player has learned the rules of the game, he or she can focus on the subject matter. A still further advantage lies in the reduced cost associated with the purchase of additional “Theme Packs” rather than a whole new board game for each additional book or subject matter, and the reduced storage space associated therewith.

The various features of novelty which characterize the invention are pointed out with more particularity in the claims annexed to and forming a part of this disclosure. For a better understanding of the invention, its operating advantages and specific objects attained by its use, reference should be made to the accompanying drawings and descriptive matter in which there are illustrated and described preferred embodiments of the invention.

IN THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of the board;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the spinner;

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the “Theme Identification,” “Start Area” and “The Winner Area” panels related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the instruction panels corresponding to green-colored and pink-colored spaces on the board, related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 5 is a top plan view of the illustrated panels corresponding to blank spaces on the board, related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the front side and back side of question cards related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 7 is a top plan view of the “Theme Identification,” “Start Area” and “The Winner Area” panels related to the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland as a second exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 8 is a top plan view of the instruction panels corresponding to green-colored and pink-colored spaces on the board, related to the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland as a second exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 9 is a top plan view of the illustrated panels corresponding to blank spaces on the board, related to the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland as a second exemplary “Theme Pack;”

FIG. 10 is a top plan view of the front side and back side of question cards related to the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland as a second exemplary “Theme Pack;” and

FIG. 11 contains a top plan view of one character image panel related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack,” a front view of one game piece with the said character image panel affixed and a side view of the said game piece.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

With reference to FIG. 1, the present invention includes a planar rectangular game board 100 having printed thereon a contiguous series of spaces. Each space is identified by a number printed on the bottom right corner 102. Spaces 2 through 31 are square-shaped areas distinguished by thin borders whereas spaces 1, 32 and 33 are rectangular-shaped areas distinguished by thick borders. Space 1 has the words “Start Area” printed therein. Space 32 has the words “The Winner Area” printed therein. Space 33 has the words “Theme Area” printed therein. The movement path originates at space 1, follows the numerical sequence of the spaces from 1 to 32 and ends at space 32. Spaces 3, 9, 15, 18, 23 and 28 bear a pattern of green-colored diagonal lines 104. Spaces 5, 6, 10, 14, 21, 25 and 29 bear a pink-colored grid pattern 106 . Spaces 2, 7, 12, 19, 22, 24, 26 and 31 are blank 108. Spaces 4, 8, 11, 13, 16, 17, 20, 27 and 30 are blue-colored and have the words “Draw a question card” printed therein 110. The left side of the board has a rectangular-shaped area distinguished by a thick border and has the words “Place Question ? Cards here” printed therein 112. The right side of the board has a rectangular-shaped area distinguished by a thick border and has the words “Place used Question ? Cards here” printed therein 114. A square-shaped area distinguished by a thick border has the words “Place Spinner Here” printed therein 116. An unbordered region on the right side of the board has the words “Token Bank” printed therein 118. Unbordered regions on the top left, top right, center left, center right, bottom left and bottom right side of the board have the word “Tokens” printed therein 120. The bottom center region of the board has a rectangular-shaped area distinguished by a thick border and has the rules of the game printed therein 122. In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, the board is produced from two thin layers of a lightweight material such as cellulose or polyvinylchloride and has a metallic material in between. A very thin layer of cellulose on which the playing field is printed is adhered to the top surface of the board. Both top and bottom surfaces of the planar board have a water-impermeable coating.

FIG. 2 shows a random play movement selector, which might be a dice, an electronic device or, as in this case, a spinner that is to be used with all “Theme Packs.” A square-shaped thin layer of cellulose or plastic provides a base 124 for adhering a very thin layer of cellulose on which a circular image is printed 126. The circular area 126 is divided into 6 equal-sized regions 128, distinguished by a thin border 130, each containing one of the following indicia: “1,” “2,” “3,” “4,” “Lose Turn” or “Free Spin” printed therein. An arrow is affixed on the top surface of the spinner via a metallic or plastic pin that connects the center of the arrow's shaft to the central point of the aforementioned circular area 132, such that the arrow is free to rotate about the axis of the pin.

Clearly this is but one of many random number selectors which may be used. Dice could also be used. Conceivably some form of simply electronic calculator could also be used.

FIG. 3A shows the “Theme Identification” panel related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” The panel is fashioned from a rectangular-shaped magnetic material as a base. Adhered onto the top surface of the magnetic base is a very thin layer of cellulose on which is printed the title 134 and author 136 of the aforementioned book, and an illustration 138 of a character from the book. The top right corner of the printed surface has “33” printed therein 140.

FIG. 3B shows the “Start Area” panel related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” The panel is similarly fashioned from a rectangular-shaped magnetic material as a base. A very thin layer of cellulose is adhered to the top surface of the aforementioned base with the words “The Cyclone” and “Start” 142, and an illustration of a scene from the aforementioned book printed thereon 144. The bottom left corner of the printed surface has “1” printed therein 146.

FIG. 3C shows the “The Winner Area” panel related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” The panel is similarly fashioned from a square-shaped magnetic material as a base. A very thin layer of cellulose is adhered to the top surface of the aforementioned base with the words “Home Again” and “Win” 148, and an illustration of a scene 150 from the aforementioned book printed thereon. The bottom left corner of the printed surface has “32” printed therein 152.

FIG. 4 shows instruction panels related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” Each panel is fashioned from a square-shaped magnetic material as a base. Adhered onto the top surface of the magnetic base is a very thin layer of cellulose on which is printed a statement followed by an instruction for movement of a game piece 154. The number printed in the bottom right corner of the instruction panel corresponds to the specific space on the game board on which the panel is to be placed 156.

FIG. 5 shows illustrated panels related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” Each panel is fashioned from a square-shaped magnetic material as a base. Adhered onto the top surface of the magnetic base is a very thin layer of cellulose on which is printed a scene from the aforementioned book 158. Each panel has a different scene printed on it. The number printed on the illustrated panel corresponds to the specific space on the game board on which the said panel is to be placed 160.

FIG. 6 shows question cards related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” Each question card is formed from a rectangular-shaped thin layer of cellulose. Each question card has an illustration of a scene from the aforementioned book printed in the top left corner of one surface designated as “front” 162. Below the illustration is printed a question 164, followed by instructions for movement of a game piece in the events of a correct 166 and incorrect answer 168. The other surface of the card, designated as “back,” has a different scene from the aforementioned book printed in the top left corner 170. The correct answer to the question on the “front” side of the card is printed below the illustration on the “back” side of the card 172.

FIG. 11A shows one character image panel related to the book The Wonderful Wizard of OZ as an exemplary “Theme Pack.” The panel is fashioned from a square-shaped magnetic material as a base. Adhered onto the top surface of the magnetic base is a very thin layer of cellulose on which is printed a character 174 from the aforementioned book.

FIG. 11B shows a side view of a game piece having a plastic base 176 and a metallic upperpanel 178.

FIG. 11C shows a front view of one character image panel affixed to one game piece via a magnetic interaction.

Prior to commencement of the game, the “Theme Identification,” “Start Area” and “The Winner Area” panels, shown in FIG. 3, are laid out on the game board in spaces numbered 1, 32 and 33, respectively. The instruction panels, shown in FIG. 4, corresponding to green-colored spaces numbered 3, 9, 15, 18, 23, 28 and pink-colored spaces numbered 5, 6, 10, 14, 21, 25, 29 are laid out on the board. The illustrated panels, shown in FIG. 5, corresponding to blank spaces numbered 2, 7, 12, 19, 22, 24, 26, 31 are also laid out on the board. Question cards, shown in FIG. 6, are placed on the board in the area designated as “Place Question ? Cards Here” with the front sides facing up. Tokens are placed in the area designated as “Token Bank.” The character image panels shown in FIG. 11A are then affixed to game pieces, as shown in FIG. 11C.

The game commences with each player selecting and placing their game piece in space number 1. Each player spins the arrow of the spinner shown in FIG. 2 and the player who spins the highest number plays first. If two or more players get the highest number they spin again to determine who plays first. The order of play is clockwise from the person who plays first. The first player spins the arrow of the spinner again to determine the number of spaces to advance his or her game piece. The other players proceed in a similar manner. If the arrow of the spinner lands on “Free Spin” the player is entitled to collect one token from the “Token Bank” and spin again. A player loses his or her turn if the arrow of the spinner lands on “Lose Turn,” unless the player is in possession of a token which can be redeemed for the chance to play.

Upon landing on one of the green-colored instruction panels, a player is entitled to advance his or her game piece as indicated on the panel. Upon landing on one of the pink-colored instruction panels, a player is required to move his or her game piece as indicated on the panel. If a player is instructed to return to the starting space, a token may be redeemed for the chance to immediately play again. If the player is instructed to lose his or her next turn, two tokens can be redeemed for the chance to immediately play again; alternatively, one token can be redeemed to avoid losing the next turn. Upon landing on one of the blue-colored “Take a Question Card” spaces, a player must select a question card, read the question and proffer an answer. A player is entitled to advance the number of spaces indicated on the question card, or less, if the question is answered correctly. If answered incorrectly, a player is required to move the game piece as indicated on the question card. The object of the game is to be the first player to reach the last square designated “The Winner Area.” No player can move directly into the last square from a blue-colored “Take a Question Card” space.

The present invention can be adapted to different books or subject matter by simply changing the “Theme Pack.” As an example, the game can be varied from testing a player's comprehension of the book titled The Wonderful Wizard of OZ to testing a player's comprehension of the book titled Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. FIGS. 7 through 10 show the components of a second “Theme Pack” related to the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

The foregoing is a description of a preferred embodiment of the invention which is given here by way of example only. The invention is not to be taken as limited to any of the specific features as described, but comprehends all such variations thereof as come within the scope of the appended claims.