Sunday, January 13, 2013


By: Tom Safford
Level of Difficulty: *
·         Have you ever played Tetris?
·         How long did you play for once you had started?
·         Why do you think people have trouble stopping once they have started?

  Why You'll Always Lose at Tetris | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios
The psychology of Tetris

1.       What are the two basic components of the game Tetris?
2.       What is a pharmatronic?
3.       People with PTSD may be able to benefit from Tetris because of ……………………………………………
4.       What basic human instinct does Tetris exploit?
5.       What is the basic difference between snooker and Tetris?
6.       Most teachers will memorize the names of their students immediately, not forget them during the winter break but forget them immediately during the summer holidays. What is this phenomenon called and why does it happen? Be specific.
7.       For what two reasons does the game Tetris fit in with the Zeigarnik effect?
8.       Why do so many people find it impossible to stop playing Tetris? Be brief and to the point.
9.       Why exactly does the Zeigarnik effect occur?
10.   Look at the last paragraph of the text carefully and answer the following questions:
·         What is the function of the first sentence?
·         What is the function of the second sentence?
·         What is the function of the following two sentences?
·         What is the function of the last sentence?
Write a summary of the text after you have made a few notes. To see how this is done, study the file marked “Summaries” on this blog. Begin as follows:
“Tetris is a simple mechanical game which draws on….”
This wonderful little text should appeal to the current generation which is, after all the Tetris generation. They will be able to relate to it and recount their own experiences. Best of all it is simple and straightforward, which means it can be done quite early in the year.
1.       Shapes that fall from the sky; an annoyingly addictive electronic soundtrack
2.       A video game with the potency of an addictive drug.
3.       Its mental pull.
4.       The (deep-seated) psychological drive to tidy up.
5.       In the case of/ In Tetris, not only must the player tidy up, but the computer keeps throwing extra blocks from the sky to add to the mess.
6.       Because complete tasks don’t stick in the memory; the Zeigarnik Effect. This question is the only difficult one in the bunch but I felt it was a good idea to meet it early on and get used to the idea that reading tasks can’t be done on auto pilot.
7.       It continually creates unfinished tasks (students will need to make the answer fit the grammar of the question); each unfinished task only appears at the same time as its solution.
8.       Because it creates a world where action is quicker than words.
9.       Because the mind is designed to reorganize around the pursuit of goals.
10.   Provides transition from the previous paragraph; the main idea; support for the main idea; concluding statement. At this point go back to question 8 and explain why the lengthy support that follows the correct answer cannot be accepted and they must learn to home in on the main idea.

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