Domino is a classic game that has stood the test of time and continues to delight children worldwide. This timeless toy offers kids the opportunity to develop a variety of skills, such as spatial awareness, colour recognition and fine motor ability.
A domino is a rectangular tile bearing an arrangement of dots, or pips, on one side and blank or identically patterned on the other. Dominoes are divided into groups of ten. Each group represents a number and is numbered from 0 to 9. A double domino has two matching sides.
There are numerous games that can be played with dominoes, and the rules of these games vary slightly from one to another. The general rule is that a player must play a tile so that its end matches the corresponding end of an existing domino on the table. This creates a chain or “snakeline” of dominoes that forms in a variety of ways depending on the arrangement and layout of the tiles on the table.
Many games also use a stock of unplayed dominoes, or “bones,” from which players may draw new hands during their turn. The number of bones drawn for each hand varies according to the game being played, and in some cases the number of dominoes left over from the stock at the end of a round of play are added to the winner’s score.
Depending on the game, there are also certain types of domino that are considered to be “spinners” because they can be played on both sides of the board. These dominoes are usually marked with an arrow or other indicator on their back to identify them as spinners, and are sometimes kept in a separate stack from the main stock of dominoes.
Some games include a special “Trump” domino that sets the trump suit for that round of play. When this domino is played, other players must try to match it with a tile from their hand that has the highest number of pips on one or both sides. If they can’t, the opponent wins the game.
A fun variation on this game is to take a piece of paper and write down a list of the domino colour code (or set) and then ask your child to place the correct domino against each one in the trail, making sure that the colours are lined up correctly. This helps them to recognise the colour of each domino, and it also sharpens their spacial awareness and improves their hand-eye coordination. The best part is, they’ll get to eat the candies at the end of the trail! So, what are you waiting for? Gather your friends and family and get playing! You’ll have a blast!