Connect 4 is a good game for the classroom because it is fast, cheap, strategically deep, and if you lose some of the chips the game is still playable (most games are over long before all the pieces are used).
However, equally important is that the same equipment can be used to explore other questions. Here are some:
- Play so that you LOSE the game if you create 3 in a row. If your opponent and you work together – can you fill the whole board with nobody losing?
- Make a 4×4 pattern. The yellow chips are truth tellers. The other chips are liars. After putting them in a 4×4 pattern all sixteen say “I have two neighbours that are my color.” (Neighbours are right, left, up and down.)
- Do this with other rectangles. For which other rectangles is it possible that every chip says “I have two neighbours my color?”
Thanks to pseudonym “Popperipopp” for the image.