Amber and I are playing the Ann Arbor District Library’s Summer game for 2016. We happened across it while at the Pittsfield Branch returning the telescope. Amber filled out the whole read-10-books game card in under a week (I think 2 days, but maybe 3). For doing the card, she earned 4 stickers, an AADL branded beach ball, and a new book, which in her words: “It’s my new book and I don’t even have to give it back!” Doing the card is also worth 2,000 points.
Points are for the on the online version of the game, and can be spent in the AADL’s Summer Game store. We each already got ourselves an AADL branded yo-yo (the one I had from years before Amber was born is now broken). There’s also a nifty AADL branded messenger bag that I like, which is 30,000 points! Amber said to me: “Mama, I’m going to earn that for you.” So sweet!
At each library branch (there are 4 open this Summer) there are 10 green signs (or 15 at the Main library downtown) with codes worth 200 points each, and a banner outside with a code worth 1,000 points. You also get 100 points for each book read. And you can get friend codes from other players which range from 100 to 250 points (depending on if you friend each other or not). Adding those up, there’s no realistic way to get to 30,000. I told Amber so and said I was sorry.
Then that night I was working on earning some digital badges in the game by using badge clues to search the online catalog for game codes. Having gotten stuck the day before, and finding it was taking more time than I’d like to earn a badge, I wandered off to my step-sister’s Joy’s game account. There I saw how many badges she’d already earned. I thought of asking for help from her. I noticed a couple of the badges looked cool, and wondering what all the possible badges were lead me to the master “badges” page. I was browsing there when I noticed one of the categories was titled “Exploration badges” instead of “Web search badges”.
“What are exploration badges?” I wondered. I checked into them, and turns out there are game codes hidden in various locations around Ann Arbor! Not just at the libraries. There’s one downtown on the Washtenaw Deeds building, which paired with a web search code gives a badge. There are 7 in the U of M Law Quad, following scavenger hunt clues, which together earn a badge. There’s a bunch in the Arboretum that together earn a badge. There’s one in the downtown library’s administration office that by itself earns a 500 point badge! AND once you find all the proper codes – each with have their own points worth – for a badge there’s a badge bonus points reward too! I started adding things up, and suddenly 30,000 didn’t seem improbable anymore!
So early last week I told Amber. I told her I think if we worked together at earning points that we might be able to get to 30,000 points. Amber was happy. She really wants to earn the bag for me! I’m excited. Another thing my daughter and I can do together. It’s easily trackable, and it’s fun! We’re having fun exploring the libraries while hunting for codes. I set up our accounts so I can put codes into my phone while we’re out. I only do the green sign codes, the banners, and bonus white sign codes. Badge codes we write down and put into our accounts on the computer so we can see the badges we earn. So cool!