Saturday, February 27, 2010

Never-Ending Monopoly

At my GATE training, we had a presenter who came up in front of us teachers for a half hour and discussed the benefits of playing Monopoly, as far as sharpening your math skills and such. He also discussed all of the various strategies that can be utilized within the game (Monopoly actually can involve strategy--who knew?) and the various mathematical statistics and odds integrated into the game. Although it was strange to listen to a lecture about a board game, everything the presenter said was extremely interesting, and left me with a desire to start playing Monopoly with Clint and the kids. The only problem though is that from my personal experience, Monopoly when played to completion can be a three or four hour game. There is simply NO WAY that we can spare that kind of time. But again, I really wanted to start playing it with the kids, so we came up with a plan that we enacted last Wednesday.

Our plan was to start a game of Monopoly, but we committed ourselves to only playing it for about 35 minutes. Of course at the end of this time period we weren't even close to being finished, so we took plastic sandwich baggies and put all of our money and property into them, and then labeled each bag with our names. I also took little stickies and marked on the board where each person left off in the game.

Today we pulled out the game again and continued exactly where we had left off. Again, after about 35 minutes, we packed up the game and filled up our personal bags with all of our goodies (which now included houses and such).
This is such a simple concept, but it is so much fun! It turns one game of Monopoly into this tournament that spans days, maybe even weeks, but without ever taking up more than 30-35 minutes of commitment. And now that houses have been put into play, we are all so excited to pull out the game again later this week and see who is going to squash who in realtor land. The only downfall is that I'm losing miserably. I negotiated with Elijah what seemed like a great deal (for me) to acquire the whole St. Charles Place group of three, but then Elijah gave my trade of Indiana Ave. to Trinity, who in return gave him New York Ave. To make a long story short, the two of them now own a whole corner of the board and Clint and I are screwed. Not to mention that Clint owns Park Place and Boardwalk, and his last move was to put houses on both, so really I'm the only one who's screwed.

Nothing like getting creamed by the six year old. Why did I want to teach my kids how to play Monopoly again?