CHENGDU, China - A teacher in China has invented a new mahjong game that is designed to teach students English. Tian Jingyun, headmaster of the Jitou Middle School in Chengdu, in southwest China’s Sichuan province, created the game which replaces the symbols and numbers on the tiles of the traditional ancient Chinese game with English letters.
The goal is to help his students learn English. In the game, each tile stands for an English letter, and the number of tiles for each letter differs according to the letter’s frequency in the text.
For example, there are eight tiles for the letter “i” but only two tiles for the letter “b” in his set of mahjong. Students have to draw and discard tiles to spell words.
The more words they spell, the higher their scores will be. The one who gets the highest score has to make a sentence and tell a story with the words he or she has made to end the game.