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Chexagon Board and Games Review by Danielle LenzGeorge Lanier
Chexagon is a fantastic tool for incorporating fun into your math curriculum! This 2-player game intended for ages six and up comes fully equipped with all the materials needed for three different games (folding game board, thirty stacking checkers, two eight-sided die, and instructions). Similar to a chess or checkerboard, the Chexagon board gets its uniqueness from its hexagon shape. You can play any of the three math games included, or you can even grab your own chess pieces and play an extra challenging version of this common strategy game. The three math games included are “Checkers” (traditional, but with a twist!), “Connection,” and “Gammon.” The game is available for home use on the Chexagon website for $12.95. Chexagon also offers a variety of education packs that can be purchased for school/community use.
My oldest two children (ages 8 and 9) had a great time playing this game with their dad and me over the last several weeks. We have many “family game nights in our house,” and Chexagon provided us an excellent opportunity to bring some math fun into the fold. The first game we played was “Gammon.” This game is quick (10-15 minutes) and easy, giving each player the chance to complete simple math computations to get ahead. We incorporated Gammon into our regular school day when we were feeling bored with our usual textbook lessons. “Connection” is a bit more challenging and took about 20-30 minutes per game. This game encourages each player to make their own “connections” (four checkers in a straight row) while preventing your opponent from making any. There are many point values to add up in “Connection,” requiring both addition and multiplication skills. The third game included is “Checkers.” Standard checkers rules apply, but pieces are moved diagonally instead of straight forward. Once we had played all the Chexagon games, we grabbed our own chess pieces and tested out playing on the hexagon-shaped board. My son loves chess, and we play often. We were both surprised by how much the diagonal movements challenged our typical strategies!
My children do not often ask to do math lessons, but they do ask to play Chexagon games multiple times a week! I love that they are enjoying exercising their math and critical thinking skills. We did find the included instructions to be quite confusing- especially for “Gammon.” There are detailed instructions for each type of move, but it lacked a simple explanation about the game’s overall objective. I would have liked to see an “on your turn” section that laid out the gameplay in a simple, easy-start way. A quick Google search brought us to a YouTube video featuring Chexagon’s creator, George Lanier, playing a sample game of Gammon. We found this video extremely helpful and could begin to play easily after watching it through once.
Overall, my family enjoyed all three Chexagon games and will continue to play and share with friends for years to come. I would recommend this game for anyone looking to mix up their curriculum routine!
-Product review by Danielle Lenz, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, February 2021