History Of Boardgames

In many countries today, boardgames are drawn in the sand with a stick and played with pebbles as counters and flat sticks instead of dice. There is no reason to believe that at the beginning of civilisation, our ancestors did not play the same games.

The first recorded use of boardgames goes back to prehistoric times over 7000 years to an inlaid games board found in Ur (Iran 5500BC).

Many old games have been found in tombs. Rich grieving parents often buried their children with their favourite toys and games. The early Egyptians used mud gaming boards (3000BC). A board and peg game found in an Egyptian tomb of about 2800BC shows 2 players with pegs headed with either dogs or wolfs. Dice were used with this game, so both luck and skill were involved. It had a drawer underneath for storing the pieces. Chess is the oldest surviving game, it was played by the Egyptians.

Palamedes of Greece was said to have invented the dice in about 1400BC. Cubical stones and clay die (plural of dice) from this period have been found with numbers pitted or inlaid on their faces.

On ‘modern’ dice, the sum of each pair of opposite faces add upto seven. This was suggested by Eastanthius, Archbishop of Thessalonica, Greece in 1193BC to stop cheats who made dice with two number ‘ones’.
Dice have not always been made in the shape of a cube. Stone dice used in Egypt in about 250BC were 10 sided. A tubular dice made from Ivory has been found with marks of the numbers one, two, and three on the sides, spaced apart with ornamental lines. Prior to the use of dice, flat sticks were used marked with numbers. Sometimes the dice were marked with symbols or colours.

The story of games in Britain begins with the arrival of the Romans in 43AD. For the next 400 years Britain was part of the Roman Empire. Unlike earlier peoples in Britain, the Romans wrote books which described children’s games and artists made carvings, mosaics and wall paintings showing scenes of daily life. The Romans played the game of ‘Tabula’ which is similar to the modern game of Backgammon.

Few boardgames exist from the period after the Romans left. The invasions by the Anglo-Saxons from Germany, Vikings from Scandinavia and the Normans from France destroyed much. Anglo-Saxon draughts pieces have been found made from horse’ teeth. The Vikings introduced the boardgame of Hnefatafl in 400AD. Draughts was probably invented in the south of France in about 1100AD, using Backgammon playing pieces on a chequered chess board.

In 1120AD Bartholomew’s Fair started in London. Between 1133 and 1300AD, people played boardgames sitting under the trees in the Pirory Churchyard in Smithfields, London. Lords and courtiers played chess and dice in their castles.

The first proper toy shops appeared in 1720. Before that, games would be sold at local fairs and markets and by peddlers travelling around the country. When Queen Victoria’s reign started in 1837, toys and games were made by hand and were very expensive. The toymakers usually worked from home. Many children made a living making toys, working 70 hours per week. They never attended school. In 1870 a law was passed saying all children had to go to school. Few went as many parents could not afford the fees. After 1891 most schools became free.

The first boardgame to be manufactured in the USA was “The Mansion of Happiness” issued in 1843. Improved printing and production techniques and better distribution methods together with increased prosperity and greater leisure time combined to make boardgames big business. Halma was invented in England in 1854. The old Indian game of Pachisi was brought to England in 1896 and called Ludo.
J.W.Spears formed his company in 1878. Their 1910 catalogue listed 114 different boardgames. The Parker Brothers started up in 1883 and Chad Valley was formed in 1897. By the beginning of this century, hundreds of thousands of boardgames were being made each year. Many games were educational or moral, even the early Snakes and Ladders had a moral significance. The little pictures showed good and bad deeds. A child who carried a load for an old woman would go up the ladder, but the one who was greedy and over-ate would go back down the body of the snake. Virtue being rewarded and vice punished.

The end of the 1920’s brought the Great Depression. Many were out of work throughout the world. There were no Social Services to fall back on. Many died of hunger. One of the millions out of work was Charles Darrow, a heating engineer from Pennsylvania. In 1930, he improvised a game, writing the street name of Atlantic City around the edge of the board. He spent evenings playing at property speculation. His friends wanted copies of his game so he started to make a few. He also sold some to a department store. In 1935 Parker Brothers sold over a million sets. The game is called ‘Monopopy’.
‘Sorry’ is another successful game from this time, produced by Waddington’s in Britain in 1934.
After the Second World War the boardgames had to fight competition from other forms of leisure interests such as Radio and Television. Manufacturers produced boardgames based on well known Comics, Radio and TV programs. Scrabble was invented in 1950.

Boardgames have been used as free gifts by various manufacturers to promote and advertise their products.
In 1926 Huntley and Palmer gave away a game of checkers using actual “Ginger Nuts & Butter Osbourns” biscuits as the checkers. Today Cereal Manufacturer print boardgames on their packets and they are played with the printed ‘Teetotums’

Sources.

  1. The History of Toys and Games by Peter Chrisp. Wayward.
  2. Victorian Toys & Games by Katrina Siliprandi. Wayland.
  3. Antique Toys & their background by Gwen White. Chancellor Press.(1951)
  4. Making Board, Peg & Dice Games by Jeff Loader. Guild of Master Craftsman.(1993)
  5. Great Boardgames by Brian Love. Ebury Press.(1979)
  6. Discovering Old Board Games by R.C.Bell. Shire Publications.(1973)

Bicycle Project Brief

Research homework project set over a number of weeks

Bicycles in this country are used for fun. In poorer Third World countries, bicycles are mainly used for transporting people and goods. Many of the bicycles sold in this country are made in the poorer Asian countries such as Indonesia. Halfords sells more bicycles than any other shop. Helmets are a good safety idea as the head is easily damaged in accidents.

Use the Argos catalogue and Encarta as sources of information.

Project Presentation

All work must be presented on bordered A4 plain white paper in either landscape or portrait.   Each new section must start on a new page with a heading.  All the pages must be fixed together and presented with care.  Do not put the pages in plastic wallets or a ring binder as it makes marking very difficult.

Project Marking

You will be given marks for:-

  1. Overall quality of the presentation of your work.
  2. Neatness of your writing and drawings and the use of pictures and colour.
  3. All pages must use the same style of lettering, borders, colours etc.
  4. Depth of research in all sections.
  5. Content of each page.
  6. Your ability to answer the questions in the correct way.

Mineral Water Bottle Label Project

Purpose

A very old local Dairy has had a significant drop in sales of its milk delivered to the doorstep in glass bottles. Consumers are buying their milk in large plastic containers from Supermarkets.
Because of this, the Dairy has had to take one complete bottling line out of production and they are now also left with a stack of unused 1pint glass milk bottles.

For many years, the company has been using water pumped from a deep well underneath the factory floor for cleaning the dirty returned bottles. Recently the owners have discovered that the workforce have been taking bottles of this water home to drink as it has a pleasant taste and is much better than the local tap water.
Analysis of the water has found it to be one of the highest quality mineral waters in the UK.

The owners of the Dairy are now in a position to be able to bottle and distribute a High Quality Still Mineral Water at no cost other than for the labour necessary in bottling. There is no additional cost for distribution as they will use their existing distribution network, the “milk float”. The Mineral Water will be sold at a price well below that of the cheapest brand found in the local Supermarket.

The major start-up cost will be in Advertising. A policy decision has been made to start off slowly with a minimal expenditure and test the market with different styles and approaches. Their market research will be “real” as opposed to random questionnaires etc.

The owner has a friend who owns a small packaging company and has offered to print and die-cut the labels. He has suggested that to reduce the initial costs, the labels should be printed with two colours on a coloured card.

Brief

Design and make:-

  1. Logo and corporate image reflecting the high quality, a local product and the recycling of the glass bottle.
  2. Leaflet to be delivered with a free local newspaper to promote the new Mineral Water with a competition.
  3. Label to go on existing milk deliveries to promote the Mineral Water and ordering information.
  4. Label for Mineral Water Bottle with all statutory information and a discount flash for further orders.

No label can be permanently attached to the bottle, as this would cause major problems with the cleaning plant when the bottles are returned for reuse.

Project Presentation

All work must be presented on bordered A4 plain white paper in either landscape or portrait.   Each new section must start on a new page with a heading.  All the pages must be fixed together and presented with care.  Do not put the pages in plastic wallets or a ring binder as it makes marking very difficult.

Project Marking

You will be given marks for:-
1. Overall quality of the presentation of your work.
2. Neatness of your writing and drawings and the use of pictures and colour.
3. All pages must use the same style of lettering, borders, colours etc.
4. Depth of research in all sections.
5. Content of each page.
6. Your ability to answer the questions in the correct way.

About Us

If you are like me, trying to find anything on the internet is a lottery. Searching Yahoo or Google produces millions of hits. You come across link sites which like to other link site which link … You still end up with little useful data. I have even posted on Forums seeking good DT web sites — Nothing.

In searching the web, I came across a few good design technology sites, many without search facilities. So to solve the problem of searching each one individually, I set up this “Refined Search Engine” to search this group simultaneously.

These sites have been chosen for their wide range of content and not their teaching resources.

House Parent

Candidate Requirements:

To take charge of a boys’ boarding house of approximately 40 boarders (most are full boarders, some are weekly boarders and some are day children boarding on specific nights).

The job entails involvement with the Management team and would be ideal for someone ambitious to be a Head in due course. Genuine pastoral interest essential. Good salary and benefits. Teaching subjects preferred – English, Maths, RS, Latin or Art

About the School:

Situated on an attractive island site, St Andrew’s has developed at a rapid rate since the merger with Ascham, the prep school for Eastbourne College, in 1977. Girls arrived in the school at that time and a new classroom block was built to house the influx of extra pupils. Since then the Pre-prep has been re-housed in purpose-built accommodation in 1984 and a further extension of the facilities including an assembly hall/gym, was completed in 1998. A state-of-the art ICT suite with interactive white boards and lap top computers was added to the Pre-prep in July 2002.

At the same time as the Pre-prep building was constructed, spacious new DT and Art rooms were added. The music school, with an auditorium, was completed in 1989, while a large pavilion, an indoor shooting range, and an HQ for Cubs, Brownies, Guides and Scouts was constructed in 1992. The heated indoor swimming pool dating from 1976 has recently been extended to provide more spectator space, the ventilation has been upgraded and the changing rooms have been re-designed and refurbished. The dormitory accommodation of the boys has undergone an £80,000 face-lift, and the girls’ boarding house has been comfortably refurbished over the past few years.

How to apply:

  • All applications for this vacancy must be received online.
  • If you would like to apply for this teaching post, please click the button below.
  • All applications must be received by 05 February 2003.