I Spy Memory Game Review
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Players: 1-6 (ages 5+)
Playing Time: 30 minutes

If you need a fun way to strengthen your child’s memory retention (or maybe your own!), then the I Spy Memory Game should become a part of your family’s game collection.

There are multiple ways to play I Spy, but the easiest is the memory game. The rules are simple. To start, mix the cards and place all of the cards face-down in rows. On your turn, turn over two cards to see if they match. If they don’t, return the cards to their original position, upside-down, and your turn ends. If they match, continue flipping pairs of cards until you find an un-matching pair. The player who accumulates the most matching pairs is the winner.

Each card has one large object depicted on it—and that object matches with one other card in the deck. The prominent object, like a clown, is then surrounded by an array of smaller items, such as rubber bands, paperclips, stars, etc. Besides testing children’s memories, these cards are a great way to teach them visual interpretation, since the pairs of images are not exact replicas of one another. Though there might be two cards with a clown, the clowns are displayed differently. For example, they may be facing different directions or placed on different backgrounds. This is a simple yet effective way to teach children not just to memorize what the picture of the clown looks like, but also to interpret and understand the visual concept of the clown and match the images accordingly.

This game is more than just a basic memory game. You can also choose to play it as a riddle game, a riddle memory game, or a photo association game. Each variation has its own set of rules, and some even make use of the smaller objects on the cards, which is a useful way to teach children to pay attention to detail. There are supplementary activities as well, one of which asks you to count the number of rubber bands on the cards. Some of the variations have both competitive and cooperative versions to play, the latter of which is especially useful if you’d like to develop teamwork skills with younger players. This game even encourages you to make up your own rules and riddles.

It’s refreshing to see a boxed game that encourages children to be creative and thoughtful. With so many options to play, there’s no doubt that children will return to this game over and over again.

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