Thursday, August 24, 2006

Logic resources from Shirreware

The Four Questions Logic Tutorial
Labyrynth Computer Game
Available from
© 2006 Jean W. Rioux

Reviewed by Ana Braga-Henebry, M.A.

Shirreware, a small independent producer of educational software based in northeast Kansas, has two new products available now for High School and College students who are studying logic. Descriptions from their website state:

Our first program, Labyrynth™, presents students of traditional, or Aristotelian, logic with a series of questions and problems to solve through the medium of a three-dimensional, graphical world.

Our second program, The Four Questions, is a stand-alone tutorial for traditional logic, comprising a complete text, with accompanying examples, and drill-and-practice exercises for propositional and syllogistic logic.

I would like to point out the major difference between these two products. The Four Questions is a tutorial in logic presented in a very simple, read-me format with accompanying exercises. Labyrynth is an engaging computer game with color graphics and sound that requires some basic knowledge of logic. Students will be able to play Labyrynth successfully only after having gone through some introduction to logic, such as The Four Questions. The game serves as fine reinforcing of the concepts presented in the tutorial.

The Four Questions CD Rom is composed of the text of the book with the same name by the same author, but with additional notes at the end of each chapter, plus quizzes and answer keys.

Our 8th grader has studied logic under a dedicated tutor, and he enjoyed the game but found it frustrating at times, perhaps due to his age. The game is similar to well known computer games: players roam through a mysterious museum, solving the logic puzzles to advance to the next level as they seek the answer to the mystery of the building and its builder.

If you are looking for either a tutorial introduction to logic or a challenging but fun computer activity, check out these products. At the website you can find more information, including detailed information about system requirements.

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