When I was a wee child, I had an amazing toy. I don't know how much of a "toy" it really is, I have a pretty broad definition of the word. It's more like a series of activity books with a hands-on tool.
It was called "Think-it-through". Made by Discovery Toys in 1989. That's also my birth-year, so clearly this was something that was created specifically for me. I'd like to dedicate this post to properly thank Think-it-Through, and give it the credit it deserves.
I was just brain-storming like I usually do. Questioning what separated me from the rest of the world in terms of intelligence. Then I remembered the prevalence of the Think-it-through tiles in my childhood, and how much I loved them. I then began to wonder how much it really impacted my overall intelligence. I'm going to assume, a lot.
If I'm ever going to have offspring of my own, I want to make sure they are as smart and good as possible. My parents wanted the same thing. They succeeded. If Think-it-Through was one of the building blocks to my greater intelligence, I want the same for my potential children.
I called my mom to ask if she still had them somewhere and to explain my theory on my intelligence. She managed the find Think-it-Through and all the books that went with it. I was pretty happy about that.
It's an extremely simple device.
Each page has 12 question, with 12 answers. Just match the number with the letter and you're good to go.
To check your answers, you simply flip the thing over and open it.
and you get something like this! Or this...
On the bottom of every page, there's the answer picture. If your shapes and colors match the picture in the book, you win!
What did you win exactly? Knowledge. It's the gift that keeps on giving.
You'd have to look through these books to truly understand how much they're exactly what an aspiring smart person would want as a child. The variety of activities and range of difficulty spanning all these books is astounding.
In an attempt to share Think-it-Through's astounding teaching capabilities, here's more pictures taken to give me an excuse to use this new webcam.
Think-it-Through has some pretty simple problems.
Then there's the math books with more involving problems. All colorful and generally fun to look at with it's stories and illustrations.
Learning multiplication with pizza orders
Division with animal feet.
and fractions with space-ship gauges.
There were several books with paragraphs of English problems. They looked more like something you'd see in a standardized test.
Then there were the more abstract problems.
Like matching a picture of a food item before it's processed into food, and what it'll look like on your dinner table.
Matching the dinosaurs with their skeletons.
Pretending you're a doctor, and matching the patients with the method of treatment you'd use to treat them.
Hell, it even tried to teach you how to identify people of different cultures.
It's things like the Think-it-Through that make me question the entire education system.