Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Spring 2011 Games
Ages: 6 & Up
Manufacturer: Fat Brain Toys
Price: $24.99

As a graphic designer, the concept of this game was a huge thrill to me. Palette is designed to help children learn to match colors based on memory. Unlike most color games, Palette goes beyond common colors like red, blue or green, and instead includes every shade, tone and hue in-between. Those with an affinity for PantoneĀ® books will salivate over the package and contents alone.

Each player begins with a blank palette. On their turn they draw a color chip from the bag and try to memorize it until the 5-second time runs out. At that point, they hide the chip and turn over the color wheel cards. Each color wheel illustrates 6 shades of a particular color. Many color families have two to three color wheels associated with them, which could mean that you are looking at 12-18 shades of green! With so many shades to choose from, it can be quite challenging to try to identify the exact shade that matches your color chip. If the player is able to match the color, they keep the color chip and place it in their palette. If they choose the wrong color, the chip goes back in the bag and play continues until one player has filled their entire palette.

Matching the colors proved very challenging for our young testers and, for some color families, our adult testers as well. This made the gameplay longer than expected. The instruction manual offers variations for team play or extended time to memorize the chip to help accommodate different players. However, the game could be improved by incorporating "wild cards" of some sort that would vary the color-matching game routine.

Adding to the educational value of this game is the manual, which includes loads of information about color such as what hue, shade or tone means with illustrated examples. Overall, it is a truly unique game.

(Editor's Note: We suggest having younger children find the wheel on which their card appears rather than the specific color).

Jessica Hensley   ©2011 Parents' Choice
Jessica Hensley is a web designer, yoga and fitness enthusiast and proud mother of two very active young boys. She has been working with family and educational websites for over 12 years.

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Fat Brain Toys

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