Teach Through Games: Professor Noggin's card game series

by Sam Blanco, BCBA
12 May 2014

Outset Media accepts and requests reviews of our games and puzzles. In many cases, the blogger will have children and the experience of being a parent looking for a good family game.  For this review, Sam Blanco, BCBA has experience working with autistic children and those with learning disabilities. She has reviewed many games, evaluating each for their learning application to the children who she works with.  In this review, she evaluates Professor Noggin's card games, one of Outset Media's longest running series with over 15 awards.  So...

What does BCBA mean? It stands for Board Certified Behaviour Analyst.  To qualify to sit for the BCBA examination, a person must have a Masters degree in a human service field like psychology, special education, Behaviour Analysis, etc.  They also have 1,000 hours of supervised field work experience.  About Sam Blanco, "In the past ten years, I have worked with students with Emotional Behavior Disorder, Autism, Aspergers, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, and Learning Disabilities. The students I have worked with have been from ages 3-16. And I use games with every single one of them as a way to introduce new concepts, reinforce concepts and skills they have already learned, help with generalization of skills, and provide tools for parents who want activities to supplement their student’s education at home."

Sam working on a project with one of her learners.

Sam Blanco played Professor Noggin's card games with several children with autism and Aspergers, saying it was a "big hit".  She offers creative ways to play the card games, including an alternative to 'Noggin's Choice' to suit different goals for each learner.  We like the way she assigned teams as, "Blue Team" (hard questions) and "Green Team" (easy questions), as opposed to categorizing the children in difficulty levels.  

You can read her article here.