Published on: 5 April 2013

A game in which players take on the role of a survivor amid city streets sprawling with zombies attracted Senior School boys of all ages into the Collaborative Learning Centre (CLC) this term. Zombies!!! is just one of a number of games and activities drawing boys to the library at lunchtimes and in turn, increasing the number of students reading for pleasure.

Senior Teacher Librarian Greg Lindorff said the Library team had extended the variety of board games and jigsaw puzzles available, offering the library as a place where boys could come and enjoy themselves in a relaxed environment at lunchtimes. “We have found that this has also created an atmosphere that has encouraged boys to choose reading for pleasure as an option and there has been a significant increase in the number of them coming to the library to read at lunchtimes,” Mr Lindorff said.

“Every lunchtime, we have boys reading ebooks on their iPads, reading graphic novels, magazines and print novels in the lounge areas, and also listening to audio books. As much as possible, the Library staff join in with the boys playing the games, putting jigsaw puzzles together or just sitting down reading with them.”

The zombie game has been a big hit since it was introduced earlier this term by library assistant Luke Milton.

He knew it would be popular with the boys when he first came across it. “We have a lot of zombie books, which are very popular amongst the boys. It’s also very visual so when boys walk into the Library they are drawn into playing the game by the maps and figures,” Mr Milton said.

“Boys love games in general and while there is often a focus on computer games, they really just love any sort of game. They’re passionate about competition so by introducing knockout rounds (every Tuesday lunchtime) and adding a leader board they got right into it.”

The boys, ranging from Years 7 to 11, have also really enjoyed evolving and changing the game so that it can be played in 20 minutes. “There are lots more expansions and models for future competitions so it will be interesting to see who wins the final that is to be played before the end of term, and just how popular it becomes throughout the year.”