Games That Can Make All Kids Smarter

- Professor Silvia Bunge - Neuroscience and childhood learning expert, U.C. Berkeley and
- Bill 
Ritchie - CEO of ThinkFun games

Education - National Challenge




pledged of $10,000


days to go

Winners Announced!

Winners Announced!

Funding and Perk Details:


$5.00 minimum pledge. This project will only be funded if the full $10,000 is funded by October 20, 2013 at 11:59PM EST. Perks are distributed only if the full $10,000 is funded.

After weeks of deliberation and game-play evaluations by groups of very excited students, we are ready to announce the winners. 


Thirty-one games were submitted to our inaugural competition, with game concepts ranging in scope from strategy maze design games, to new takes on sudoku and treasure hunts! All the submissions were innovative ideas and we’re very happy to announce the winners for this competition.


Plase check out all of the winners and other submissions:

Special Perks
for your contribution,
from our friends at:

See the Submissions

Challenge Summary


A free ThinkFun Game

Get a free copy of Swish, the fast-paced flip, rotate, and stack game that builds spaital intelligence. 

Unlimited available

Etimated delivery: November 2013

Shipping costs extra.

The Problem or Opportunity

We know that reasoning and logic games can have a significant impact on the brain development of young children.  But not all children or schools can afford them.

The Solution

Free, compelling reasoning and logic games that can be easily downloaded from the Internet and constructed for free out of common household items or art supplies.

The Impact


An even cooler ThinkFun Game

Five-star rated. In Laser Maze you use lasers (yes, real lasers) to navigate through increasingly harder logic mazes. 60 challenging levels to solve.  

Unlimited available

Etimated delivery: November 2013

Shipping costs extra

Children all around the world given free access to the power of games to boost reasoning, logic, and STEM skills.

The Competition

We are raising $10,000 to fund a competition that will bring innovators from across the country together to develop the best game-based learning programs that can be made for free.

About This Challenge


A bag of ThinkFun Games

Pick three games from the amazing ThinkFun portfolio. Choose from award-winning games like Rush-Hour, Zingo, MathDice, Chocolate Fix, Solitaire Chess, and more (you'll get to select them later).

Unlimited available

Etimated delivery: November 2013

Shipping costs extra

The amazing, untapped power of games on the developing brain

There are millions of underprivileged young students who do not have access to the best learning environments or tools in their schools today. Because of this gap, these children are at a significant disadvantage: their reasoning and logic skills start to fall behind, they test lower on IQ and standardized tests, and they don't master STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) basics--all of which are key to future job success in today’s world. But, there's good news. 


These gaps can actually be closed by playing simple and engaging games (yes, games). Several years ago we incorporated ThinkFun games into our reasoning training program. Our small but influential study showed that playing fun, off-the-shelf reasoning and logic games in a social group for just 2-3 hours a week was able to boost these critical skills by over 30% and even boosted IQ scores by 10 or more points.















The affordability problem

Unfortunately, to actually duplicate the kind of after-school game program we tested above would cost a school significant money ($200 to $300 for just a couple of sets of these games). We believe that every child in the world should have the opportunity to exercise their minds with engaging, stimulating games. We want to bring the power of brain-boosting games to every child in the world, for free.


An avalanche of ThinkFun Games

Eight (count them, 8) ThinkFun games for you, your family, your friends, your school, and anyone else that loves to learn and have fun. Check-out to see all of the great games that ThinkFun offers (you'll get to select them later). 

Unlimited available

Etimated delivery: November 2013

Shipping costs extra


Top Contributor Perk

A 3D brain scan and model of your actual brain  

An experience you can't buy. You will get a once-in-a-lifetime image scan of your actual brain at Berkeley which will then be turned into a physical 3-D model which you get to keep, hold, and display. The top contributor who gives $2000 or more will win this perk. 


* You must pass an MRI safety screening in order to be scanned. If someone exceeds your donation you'll be given an opportunity to up your donation.

Unavailable (claimed)


More detailed links and information:


Read the original Newsweek article


Competition Details


Winners Announced!

This Challenge Started By

  • Champion+-+Silvia+Bunge.jpg
    Silvia Bunge

    Dr. Silvia Bunge is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute at the University of California at Berkeley. Professor Bunge directs the Building Blocks of Cognition Laboratory, which draws from the fields of cognitive neuroscience, developmental psychology, and education research. Researchers in the laboratory examine developmental changes and neural plasticity in cognitive control and reasoning skills in healthy and neurologically impaired children and adults.

  • Champion - Bill Ritchie.jpg
    Bill Ritchie
    Bill is the co-founder and CEO of ThinkFun games, the world’s leading maker of ‘addictively fun games’ that build reasoning and creative thinking skills through play.  As a TEDx speaker and former TED book store curator, Bill is a thought leader in puzzles and education. Bill is a respected member of the international puzzle community; in 2000, he received the "Sam Loyd Award for Lifetime Achievement in Mechanical Puzzles" from the Association of Game and Puzzle Collectors.

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