Children learn through play. As an occupational therapist who works with children and youth, I use games and toys almost every day to help develop important cognitive, visual perceptual, motor, sensory, social, play and leisure skills. While many different types of activities can be used in therapy, this blog focuses on off-the-shelf games and toys that are accessible to most. Whether you are a therapist, parent, teacher, or a game lover like me, I hope you discover something useful while you are here. Learn a different way to play a game you already own or discover a new game for your next family game night. Either way, just go play. It's good for you!

The OT Magazine named The Playful Otter one of the Top 5 Pediatric OT Blogs.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Melissa & Doug Flip to Win Memory Game

Work on visual memory, visual discrimination, visual closure, eye-hand coordination, spatial relations, manual dexterity, coordinated use of both hands, social skills, play and leisure exploration and participation

In the package: 1 wooden board, 7 cards
Ages 5+, 1+ players

A standard memory game that can be played on the go. Open two blue doors at a time until all matches are found and all blue doors are standing open. I think my thoughts on this game would best be written with a pro vs. con format.

  • One-person can play alone.
  • Made of solid wood and a thick elastic cord holds all the blue doors in place while still allowing them to be opened.
  • The pictures on the cards are all common items and easily recognizable for most.
  • There are seven different categories with related pictures. The categories are zoo, colors, numbers, farm, fruit, shapes, and vehicles.
  • The cards are stored right in the wooden game board. They slide in through a hole across the top.
  • There is a way to keep track of how many matches you made at the bottom of the game. Simply move the wooden pointer across the elastic cord so that it is under the correct number.

  • There are 7 cards, printed both sides, total 14 games. Sets could be memorized. For instance I only played it a few minutes and I still remember that the sevens are both together on the far right side.
  • The blue doors are smooth and close to each other and I dropped them several times while trying to open them because the elastic is pulled so tight.
  • The person on the left cannot see anything because once you make a set you leave the doors open and they block the view.
  • There are wooden pieces on an elastic cord at the bottom that you can move to keep track of who wins each game. They are both a little pointed on one end so that you can tell which number they are pointing to. One of mine was put on upside-down.
  • My biggest M&D pet peeve - no packaging. The cards all fit, and can be carried, in the game board and are removable so you can change games. There is nothing to keep the cards in the board if it gets turned upside-down.
  • It can be difficult to open some of the doors when other doors around it are already standing open. Opening doors all the way is not possible because they lie on other doors so that they can't be opened.
  • I would not recommend this item.
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