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rasmussen81
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Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 07:40
I've used Memoir '44 in the classroom for several years. Being overseas right now I haven't had the chance to teach Memoir '44 since I have so much else going on and don't have all my resources. But I'm hoping that before the end of the year I'll be able to introduce Memoir '44 to my class and get them playing this great game!

My question is...what life lessons (or academic lessons) does Memoir '44 lend itself to? There are some obvious ones, but I'm currious what people think. Rolling Eyes

Any insights are welcome! Cool
      
stevens
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 13:36
Plan for the future.

Equip yourself with the facts in order to make good decisions (read the rules)

Knowledge is power. (read the rules)

Life isn't always fair.

Choices have consequences, make good choices.

Know your opposition

Be flexible

Math is important


[Updated on: Wed, 23 November 2011 13:37]

      
bdgza
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 14:06
It's ok to keep playing with toy soldiers throughout your adult life if you call them miniatures.
      
sam1812
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 14:21
These are just plastic men. In the newspapers and in the real world, it's real people's lives. Much different.

Play wargames, not war.

And everything on Stevens's great list.

      
Achtung Panzer
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 15:06
How about:

* Obviously, a deeper knowledge of WW2, not just the well known events but an appreciation that it was global (theatres and troops)
* Calculating risks
* Consequences
* Geography - study the scenario map. Why are towns where they are (e.g. river and road crossroads) and in which country is this town?
* Risk management
* Human interaction, especially f2f and the fun of playing a game
* human behaviour - flags mean running away from danger / self preservation
* training = enhanced performance and an advantage (special and elite units)
* recognising, setting and achieving goals and objectives

On a more advanced level, accurate research when designing a scenario.


[Updated on: Wed, 23 November 2011 15:10]

      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 23 November 2011 15:25
bdgza wrote on Wed, 23 November 2011 17:06

It's ok to keep playing with toy soldiers throughout your adult life if you call them miniatures.


Laughing Laughing Nice!! Very Happy
      
sam1812
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 02:51
Achtung Panzer wrote on Wed, 23 November 2011 09:06

On a more advanced level, accurate research when designing a scenario.

Yes, indeed! I learned the importance of thorough playtesting from Brummbar.

He also taught me that you don't have to make a big change (such as adding units) when a well-placed tweak (such as putting wire on a hex) will do the job.
      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 04:33
These are all good so far! A few of the lessons I've used in my classroom are:

1) Teamwork - my students are young enough that I usually have 2 people on each side (2 v 2) and they have to work on teamwork. It's interesting to watch them figure out strategy and decide which card to play with someone else!

2) History - this is an obvious one...Memoir '44 is so useful for pulling students into history and showing that history can be interesting.

3) Probability - in a very practicle way, students have to figure out that they have a better chance of hitting an enemy unit if they cut off his retreat path, or attack Infantry instead of Artillery, or attack with several units instead of just one unit...it's a great lesson in what their chances are, and they can see how it works in real-time.

Those are a few of the things I can think of right now...I'll add more lessons as I think of them! Cool
      
TheMarshalUK
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 12:57
Excellent thoughts from everyone. In addition I have a few thoughts of my own. Competition seems to have become a dirty word. There seem to be a reluctance to let the kids lose. Most competitive activites My kids took part in in school had that competitive edge removed from them.

I find this strange as it is perfectly normal to be good at somethings and not so hot at others. It's the way of life and something which we learn and grow into to shape our future.

There are times in life when you won't win. You can't win all the time and in Memoir sometimes the odds are stacked to much against you. today there is often too much emphasis placed on winning and the subject of losing is skipped around.

Although defeat isn't the aim of any game, war or otherwise, a few important lessons are to be had from Memoir.

1) There is an old saying about it's not the winning but the taking part which is important. Memoir is so engrossing this part is easy.

2) Learning to except that which we cannot change with good grace and changing that which we can change is an important but often forgotten lesson in Memoir and Life.

3) Being gracious in defeat can be more character building than winning well.

I love anything that gets kids talking face to face and working togther. My "social network" as a kid ran into 10's rather than the hundreds that kids seem to have on electronic social networks. The key difference was that I met and played games with my buddies face to face on a daily basis.

I think it's great that Rasmussen uses Memoir with students. I recall an A level history teacher in an effort to show us the fragile nature of political alliegances between nations introduced the class to the game diplomacy. We happily played for hours learning so much as a result.
      
JJAZ
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 13:02
One word "Friendship", all over the world.
Many i have played online of you, and some i played face to face.
      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 13:42
TheMarshalUK wrote on Thu, 24 November 2011 15:57


3) Being gracious in defeat can be more character building than winning well.


Great lesson that Memoir '44 does a good job teaching! I forgot about this one in my own list but I completely agree with you. In fact, this is something that I teach the kids about specifically before we even play any battles...how to lose, and just as importantly, how we win in a gracious way. Kids are watching professional athletes who flaunt their victories and rub it in their opponent's face and they get the message that if you win you have to be a jerk about it. Memoir '44 gives a perfect opportunity for kids to practice winning and losing graciously since they get to do it fairly often! Smile

TheMarshalUK wrote on Thu, 24 November 2011 15:57

I think it's great that Rasmussen uses Memoir with students. I recall an A level history teacher in an effort to show us the fragile nature of political alliegances between nations introduced the class to the game diplomacy. We happily played for hours learning so much as a result.


Thanks for the kind words! I have a friend that used Diplomacy in his class to teach history as well. He said the kids loved it! I haven't played the game myself, but I think board games in the classroom are an under-used resource!! Very Happy
      
sam1812
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 14:55
Marshal and Ras, you both raise a great point about being gracious in losing.

When my son was 6, I taught him to play Risk. The first thing I told him, even before teaching any of the rules, was that the object of the game is not to win -- it is to have fun.

I don't know whether or not it's a result of that moment, but I see this profoundly reflected in many aspects of his personality today.

And let me also echo JJAZ's words about friendship. Through playing hundreds of games online and a good number of games in person, I have "met" people from over 30 countries and six continents. On Vassal, and I believe on M-Online, people are generally willing to chat with each other, rather than just anonymously pushing the Start button. The online gaming community brings the world together.
      
Fortytwa
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 20:19
quite simply, fair play.

I think you can take on board a whole lot from lessons etc, but if players were to develop a charachter trait that involved fair play and honesty, you wont go far wrong in life.

MPs are of course excluded from considering themselves honest or engaging in fair play Very Happy

Stand Easy

Fortytwa
      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 20:20
Fortytwa wrote on Thu, 24 November 2011 23:19


MPs are of course excluded from considering themselves honest or engaging in fair play Very Happy

Stand Easy

Fortytwa


"MPs"? I'm afraid I'm not familiar with this... Rolling Eyes Smile
      
stevens
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 21:01
Members of Parliament
      
hdescavernes
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 22:24
Introduction to scales : a memoir map can show a few hundred yards up to a few miles !

A single unit can be a platoon or a whole battalion, given the scale.
      
Fortytwa
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Thu, 24 November 2011 23:45
members of parliament is what I referred to.

Any investigations into any wrong doing by me in my military career conducted by those fine fellows in the Military Police should not be affected by anything I say here

Hopefully

If I admit to trying to "liberate" a tank whilst under the influence here does it count as being taken into consideration
      
Achtung Panzer
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Fri, 25 November 2011 09:54
Fortytwa wrote on Thu, 24 November 2011 22:45

If I admit to trying to "liberate" a tank whilst under the influence here does it count as being taken into consideration


Aha - here's a new thread: The things you learn through the Memoir Forum! Laughing
      
Fortytwa
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Fri, 25 November 2011 22:56
Ah yes, Medicine Hat in Canada. Nice chieftan tank which we got into but could'nt start. We learnt later that there are two starter buttons. not sure if that was just talk.

probably for the best all things considered.

Alcohol + 30 tonne monster = long time in the slammer
      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Fri, 25 November 2011 23:00
Fortytwa wrote on Sat, 26 November 2011 01:56

Ah yes, Medicine Hat in Canada. Nice chieftan tank which we got into but could'nt start. We learnt later that there are two starter buttons. not sure if that was just talk.

probably for the best all things considered.

Alcohol + 30 tonne monster = long time in the slammer


I'm afraid I have NO IDEA what 'Medicine Hat' means!! Laughing Laughing Very Happy

Translator!! Razz

Are you still in the military, Fortytwa?

[Updated on: Fri, 25 November 2011 23:02]

      
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sat, 26 November 2011 01:20
I've learned that their is hope,
hope as in, I hope the dice will better for me,
Very Happy and I hope I will draw better cards Laughing.
I also hope that if I attack on the right or left flank that the other person does not have a vise-versea card.
      
hdescavernes
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sat, 26 November 2011 01:34
Two words : fair + play

Don't be a sore loser, don't brag too much if you win

Congratulate the winner. Comfort the loser

[Updated on: Sat, 26 November 2011 01:36]

      
ad79
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sat, 26 November 2011 08:28
You can also discuss the issue of sending a few soldiers into danger at the benefit of the greater community.

When is it ok to risk the lives of people to make things better?
Is it ok to faint a manouvre and put some at high risk to ease the path of the main assault?

In Memoir I find that I do this sometimes to aid my overall strategy and to draw attention away from my main target/objective. But I am putting one/several units into danger.

Don't know how it fits in with the age of your pupils, as I don't teach kids about "recent" history at school. It comes in later in the curriculum.
      
Fortytwa
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sun, 27 November 2011 08:30
Fortytwa wrote on Fri, 25 November 2011 21:56

Ah yes, Medicine Hat in Canada. Nice chieftan tank which we got into but could'nt start. We learnt later that there are two starter buttons. not sure if that was just talk.

probably for the best all things considered.

Alcohol + 30 tonne monster = long time in the slammer


Medicine Hat was the name of a town in the middle of Alberta Canada where the british army used to train with live ammunition. I think it was the only place where all the arms (infantry, armour and artillary could train live.

I was Ras, in my younger and slimmer days Smile
      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sun, 27 November 2011 09:01
Fortytwa wrote on Sun, 27 November 2011 11:30

Fortytwa wrote on Fri, 25 November 2011 21:56

Ah yes, Medicine Hat in Canada. Nice chieftan tank which we got into but could'nt start. We learnt later that there are two starter buttons. not sure if that was just talk.

probably for the best all things considered.

Alcohol + 30 tonne monster = long time in the slammer


Medicine Hat was the name of a town in the middle of Alberta Canada where the british army used to train with live ammunition. I think it was the only place where all the arms (infantry, armour and artillary could train live.

I was Ras, in my younger and slimmer days Smile


Ah, thank you for the explanation. Smile Sounds like you have some interesting stories...if we ever have a chance to play an Online battle together you'll have to tell me some of them! Very Happy I won't tell anyone else...I wouldn't want you to get it trouble!! Laughing
      
TheMarshalUK
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sun, 27 November 2011 13:20
Quick tale from a friend of mine who worked with "heavy military" vehicles back in the early 90's in the 1st Iraq conflict.

It was a dark rainy winter night back in the UK and a number of tanks taken in the the conflict were being shipped back to a base in the UK. Signs had been put up in and around an old disused hangar fairly near the officers mess forbiding folks from using it for parking.

As the "drivers" started to park up the 1st couple of tanks that had arrived, into the dark hangar the word had got to the officers mess and dozens of junior officers started running out to the hanger waving there arms and shouting to stop!!

Due to the "harsh" weather condtions it appears that a large group of visiting very very senior officers had decided to park there Shiny Porche's, BMW's, Mercedes, Jaguars and other luxury expensive cars in the hangar to protect them from the rain! Fortunatley the tank drivers had stopped there reversing movements into the hangar but it would have made an interesting read if they had had to make a claim for damages...

I parked up my Car only to find that on my return a tank had reversed over it whilst making a parking manouver in the dark into my parking space ! Laughing

[Updated on: Sun, 27 November 2011 13:22]

      
rasmussen81
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Sun, 27 November 2011 18:33
TheMarshalUK wrote on Sun, 27 November 2011 16:20

I parked up my Car only to find that on my return a tank had reversed over it whilst making a parking manouver in the dark into my parking space ! Laughing


Oops! What happens with that kind of claim? Razz

So the Lesson for Memoir '44? Don't position your forces behind a Tank unit...it won't end well for someone, and you'll lose a figure in retreat!
      
JJAZ
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Mon, 28 November 2011 22:24
rasmussen81 wrote on Sun, 27 November 2011 18:33

TheMarshalUK wrote on Sun, 27 November 2011 16:20

I parked up my Car only to find that on my return a tank had reversed over it whilst making a parking manouver in the dark into my parking space ! Laughing


Oops! What happens with that kind of claim? Razz

So the Lesson for Memoir '44? Don't position your forces behind a Tank unit...it won't end well for someone, and you'll lose a figure in retreat!



did the alarm go off? Laughing
      
Quit2
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Mon, 28 November 2011 23:06
Alot of "lessons to learn" have been mentioned already.

Maybe one more: learn to increase the impact of your strenghts and reduce the impact of your weeknesses when needed. It can help you alot in life if you learn to do this.
      
Henry Pelham
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Tue, 29 November 2011 01:59
- Not sure I would tell my students this, but --

Some of the most exciting victories are won by reckless novices who adopt poor strategies and win by great luck.

- Lujo made a great comment to me after a game about the dice. He said you can tell the units what to do, but as in real life, you can't control how well they do it.

- Even when the odds are in your favor, you can still fail.

[Updated on: Tue, 29 November 2011 02:15]

      
BuddyHolly
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Re:Life Lessons from Memoir '44 Wed, 30 November 2011 23:27
As I have 2 of the base set and 2 of almost all the expansions one life lesson is the need for organizational skills.

When I was married I needed to explain the reason for having so much from one game so communication skills were learned.

Since I started buying all the expansions and keeping up on all the variants and scenarios I have learned much more about the impact extreme OCD can have on a person.


Also since I mostly play solo I have learned how to amuse myself when no one else is around. A valuable skill (especially not being married anymore)


      
    
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