The South Carolina Council on the Social Studies (SCCSS) has accepted my proposal to present the Dreadsheets Strike Back! I would really like to allow the attendees to play a version of my Boss Fights model but that would require those in the audience to have dice, a Plicker card, and access to the internet. The SCCSS should be taking care of the internet access and most of the teachers will have laptops or smart phones which means that I need to take care of the dice and Plickers cards. I have a plan and the best part is that the work will transfer into the classroom!

My solution is to make a bunch of DIY Pop-O-Matics!

Ok, They are not exactly Pop-O-Matics. Those fun little things have a little metal floor that pops die or dice into the air causing a roll. The part I am concerned with though is that this device keeps the dice contained. One element that I dislike about the dice roll mechanics in the classroom is that dice fall of tables or get scattered around the table. It can get noisy or takes time. The Pop-O-Matic solves these issues by containing the dice. Here is my plan for creating my own DIY Pop-O-Matics!

Step 1: I bought 5.5 Oz Snack Cups with lids. (20 for about $2)


Step 2: Load the Cups with the appropriate dice.

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During the SCCSS session, I will have these preloaded and in a bin at the room entrance. In the classroom I have table groups with 4-5 sets of polyhedral dice (aka Dungeons and Dragons Dice – I bought 20 sets for about $25). I will have 5 of these cups at each table group and each students will be able to load their appropriate dice based on their Avatar Status.

Step 3: Students (or attendees) can shake the cup (this is the Pop-O-Matic part) to “roll” the die or dice.

Step 4: Add the Plickers Card to the bottom of the cup.

Now this is more for the Conference attendees but maybe this will inspire some other twists in the classroom.

Anyways, just a quick thought about my DIY Pop-O-Matic. It should contain the dice rolls and speed up a little of the game play. I would love to see any new twists or improvements readers come up with.