Tuesday 9 July 2013

Mayan Mystery

My 12 year old son loves computer games. He has told me that he has learnt more through these than through books, so having a chance to review Mayan Mystery by Dig-it Games was an exciting opportunity.

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Mayan Mystery is a computer game in which some present day children learn about Mayan history as they attempt to solve a mystery about who has been stealing from archaeological sites. It is designed for grades 5 to 9 which is equivalent to UK years 6 to 10.

The game has plenty of short bites of information about the Mayan culture, some of which need to be read on the way to solving the mystery. Other information can be read if wished. This snippets were quite short and easy to read. Topics covered include Mayan beliefs about time and also how they calculated time, their artifacts and mathematics.

There is a map,

 further information to explore

 and questions to answer.

The game was easy to load and easy to play. Answering questions correctly leads to the next stage in solving the mystery.

My son used this as a fun bit of history learning at the end of the academic year, playing it at the end of the afternoon. He did comment that this wasn't quite like a usual computer game but seemed more like a piece on educational software. I guess he is probably correct! He says that he definitely knows more, now, about Mayan culture than before using the game.

This game seems ideal for the holiday or other times when some fun history is wanted. The grade range 5 to 9 is probably a bit too old; probably more suited to grade 2-6, particularly as there is audio for all the text if your child is not a strong reader. Please be aware that there is information, although not images, of Mayan sacrifices which included human sacrifices before giving this game to younger children. 

Do note that this is the first part of the game and mystery. Further installments are awaited!

A single user licence valid for one year costs $21.99 (£14.71). It is also available as an iPad app at $9.99. (£6.73)
For more reviews visit the Schoolhouse Crew Blog.

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