Children's University

Children's University Tournaments Arrive!

As I type we have just completed the first of three games tournament's as part of our on-going Games compendium project with Sheffield Children's University... and it was brilliant!

Today's event concentrated on Key Stage 2 pupils (7 - 11yr olds) from 10 schools across Sheffield, and in the coming weeks we have events for Key Stage 1 (5 - 7 yr olds) and Key Stage 3 (11 - 14 yr olds) pupils too!

It all started back in November when we delivered our own, specially tailored, boxes of games to schools across Sheffield who are members of the Children's University. The idea was to give them the ability too realise the social and educational benefits of this type of activity and the opportunity to set up their own games clubs.

As further motivation we set up these inter-school games tournaments to giive them something to look forward to and extra reason (if they needed it!) to get on with the games.

Today proved to be a fantastic event and was thoroughly enjoyed by pupils, teachers and the Imagination Gaming team too, so we can't wait for the next tournaments and we'll make sure to tell you all about them, the competition involved and of course all the winners on our blog in a couple of weeks time!


Inter-School Tournaments a Winner!

Over the last 12 months we have had the opportunity to do something new in schools. Inter-School Games Tournaments. And they've proved a massive success...

We've always known that kids (and grownups!) love a bit of healthy competition. That's one of the reasons our school games days and programmes are so successful. The engagement of competitive fun on a level playing field for all means that we can get all kinds of students and teachers navigating educational and social barriers, whilst having a great time. It's easy to do that in a single school (though 5 years ago we wouldn't necessarily have said that) but how to make it something that can easily be introduced to neighbouring schools to help integrate wider communities. I suppose the fact that we even tried it was a sign of how far we'd come.

We have had the opportunity to try this out in a few different scenarios... and it has been an instant hit... we now have schools involved in regular, Inter-School competition, and always eagerly anticipating the next one!


Earlier in the year, thanks to our association with the fantastic Sheffield arm of the Children's University, we were able to start something new with a large number of schools in that area. Essentially, each school were given a box of games specifically designed for the key stage appropriate to them, a gruelling training session* (fun gaming with coffee and biscuits that is!), and some of our own quick-play instructions to help them along. Back at school they introduced regular games clubs and got ready for their age group's inter-school tournament, each of which was a resounding success.

Across the county in Barnsley, with the help of some very impressed headteachers, we also now have plenty of schools involved in various interschool tournaments. The games have become an integral part of many of their school days, not just in clubs, but in the classroom and in family learning worshops too. They are always eagerly anticipating the next tournament and it's truly fantastic to see all the different schools having something to get excited about together, that they can benefit from individually every day too.

Each tournament has involved presentations of trophies, certificates and prizes, and the teachers have a great day too. Split between several schools, the cost becomes almost negligible making it that much more valuable and accesible and best of all, if you host the day, you don't have to pay anything at all!

There'll be plenty more info and examples of Inter-School tournaments appearing soon, but if you want to get ahead of the game and make the first move you can ask for more details right now. You'll find our contact details right here!



International Games Day @ Your Library

Ever heard of International Games Day @ Your Library?

Amazingly, somehow, we hadn't.... until now! If  you're wondering it's the 19th of November... that's next Saturday!

Granted it started on the other side of the planet (!), but it's in it's 9th year now and there seems to be plenty of places you can get involved in the UK too now... 

We'll be doing our bit, visiting 3 different libraries across Sheffield with a whole host of our new and classic games, and for the first time we''ll be unveiling games from our all new 12 Days Of Gaming promotion too!

All the events are free to attend, and as usual there will be something for everyone. Check out the times and places we'll be on our Events page right here...

You can get an idea of what the history of the event is and all the locations you can get involved this year (including in the UK), on the ILG@YL official website here , so if you can't join us in Sheffield, we of course encourage you to get involved wherever you can!

Of course, with our events being in Sheffield, it's yet another opportunity to get more Children's University credits too, as we are an official Learning Destination!

We hope to see you there



Sheffield, We'll C U Zoom!

Book your Imagination Gaming, Sheffield C.U. Zoom Session HERE!... from the 10th of July...

Before we get going, the below is strictly for members of Sheffield Children's University, don't say we didn't tell you!!! You may still want to read on even if you're not though, it is interesting!

We can now announce the 6, hour long zoom sessions we have scheduled as part of this year's annual, Sheffield Children's University Festival of Fun! Details of when the sessions are and how to book are below - please make sure to read carefully, using only the link provided to ensure your application can be dealt with effectively!

(PS you will need your Sheffield CU Passport Number... if you don't have one, you can get a passport from your local library or contact Sheffield CU to arrange one. We'll wait for you but do it quickly!)


So What's It All About?!

Each year Imagination Gaming supports the Sheffield Children's University's fantastic, annual, Festival Of Fun with the latest games and activities in a series of workshops across the city. These provide an opportunity for students (and their families) to have fun, learn something new and of course gain extra credits in their Passports to Learning.

Obviously, this year, things are going to be a little different!...

But, good news! While we won't be able to deliver our usual brand of face-to-face games antics across the table, we have been working hard behind the scenes to come up with a way for people to still get a bit of Imagination Gaming fun into their Summer and continue to earn C.U. credits 

Each session will give participants an opportunity to take part in some group games with the other members, as well as ideas to take away and make their own and signpost to other Imagination Gaming resources too.


What Will We Be Doing?!

The sessions will be varied and are still being planned, but are likely to contain one main group game, book-ended at the start and end with some fun little puzzles, games or activities too! Playing live games over Zoom isn't the easiest thing but we are being careful with which activities we choose to make it work, make it simple and make it FUN!!!

Obviously we won't be able to share pieces, boards or decks of cards... but we're working round that. (EEK!) You may be asked to prepare some props to use at your end, but nothing more than household objects and the diversity of anything you choose will add to the fun! It may just be you need a pen and paper. We may also send you some instructions beforehand to get you ready to play... but again nothing difficult.


How To Get Involved...!

Well... you are definitely going to definitely need:

  • PC / Laptop, with a camera and a microphone!***
  • A Zoom account. A free account is fine to join in. Be prepared to set this up early and have some practice using it with your friends first!
  • We'd also recommend you being sat at a table
  • We'll contact you in good time if you need anything extra to help play along!

***Please be aware we recommend one 'player' and adult per pc / application! - If there are multiple participants on the same PC, they may need to participate as if one player. We are trying a mix of ideas here so that may not be ideal!


OK, sounds good. When?!

To give as many people as possible a chance to join in, we are initially restricting sessions to 1 per student, BUT, if there are gaps we will happily contact you again to see if you would like to do more.

When applying please ALWAYS choose a preferred first and second choice session. (if you feel you can do any, tell us and we'll make a separate note, but do not send a list of four or five please!)

Session 1 : Thursday 30th July, 11am

Session 2 : Thursday 30th July, 2pm

Session 3 : Tuesday 4th August, 11am

Session 4 : Tuesday 4th August, 2pm

Session 5: Friday 7th August, 11am

Session 6: Friday 7th August, 2pm


READY TO SIGN UP? Awesome...!

Please email your interest to with the following information:***

  • Title the email "CU ZOOM INTEREST, Family Name:....." , and add your name in the subject line too. 
  • Clearly state your 1st and 2nd Choice dates and times ONLY (if you can do any, say that as well!)
  • Confirm four credentials - your Full Contact Name and Email, as well as the child's name and age.
  • Your child's Sheffield Children's University Passport Number. Without this we cannot consider you, but remember you go here to get one!

*** by applying you agree to the following as previously detailed!

  • All attendees are 8 years or older, no exceptions.
  • There will always be a responsible adult in accompaniment.
  • An understanding that this is a group activity - so play nice!!!

PS... A general note about safe-guarding. As part of the organisation of these sessions with the CU, and our ongoing status as a named Learning Destination, we have fulfilled not only our strict safe-guarding policies as per our normal face to face work in schools etc, but also put further standards in place as submitted to the Sheffield CU with regards to delivering these sessions online. We always play safe!

Please be aware we may get a lot of interest, so replies will be standard wherever possible. While we always welcome questions, please do not ask us to "bend" any of the rules we have mentioned, they are all there for good reason!


Then What?

We'll get back to you via email. The sooner you apply the better as once a session becomes full it will be removed from the above list. We will reply by the 20th July at the very latest, if not earlier depending on demand. It will give us more time to schedule groups and see what more, if anything is possible! We like more!


Until then, definitely do the following!...

  • Follow us on Facebook here, it's the easiest way to keep up to speed with the latest news and games! We love to hear your thoughts too!
  • Check out the hundred's of games coming into this years IGGY's, the Imagination Gaming Games of the Year awards. These are what we'd be playing in the libraries, but you can see them here and read reviews on our FB page!
  • Visit our newly updated Webstore for the latest and greatest games for the Summer and beyond. Search by themes and genres to find your favourites... FREE POSTAGE too!



We know it's been a weird time! We've missed doing what we normally do around the country, in schools and libraries, conventions and festivals, but things are still happening! Keep in touch, keep safe and keep playing...

... and as it says in the title, Sheffield, we'll C U Zoom!



*please note these initial sessions are for students of the Sheffield Children's University only (and their guardians). Anyone who lives and goes to school in Sheffield can easily join the amazing-ness of what the CU do, simply visit the Sheffield Children's University website here.