Using the Domino Effect in Writing and Playing Dominoes


Dominoes are long, rectangular pieces of wood or plastic with similar end shapes that can be stacked on their sides in rows to produce the signature domino effect: just one tap can cause all of them to come tumbling down with rhythmic movement. Dominoes can also be used to construct structures and play skill and chance games.

“Domino” is derived from Latin domina, meaning “heavy.” These small flat tiles typically span twice their width in length and feature various colored dots called pips at either end – these dots determine its value, from six up to no pips altogether – totaled and compared against all players to determine points awarded or lost during a game of domino.

Students in grades 2-5 can use dominoes to explore addition equations by creating them for sets of dominoes with differing numbers of dots on both ends. Once their equations have been generated, students can compare the results and find that the sum of all dots on all dominoes equals 1. Likewise, adding two opposite-numbered dots results in an unexpectedly different number of dots per end.

Hevesh shares her process for creating magnificent domino constructions by first building models to represent each component. This helps her ensure each part will work before testing it in real life. Once her model is ready, Hevesh begins putting it all together – first starting with 3-D sections before moving onto flat arrangements – filming each step so she can make any necessary corrections or make improvements as she goes.

Writing with the domino effect in mind can be invaluable in showing how a character’s actions have logical repercussions for both friends and foes alike, as well as helping to eliminate unnecessary scenes or those which don’t advance plot progression in some way. If, for instance, your hero does something unethical which violates what most people consider logical, the domino effect may fail and your readers won’t understand its logic – creating tension for your story while alienating readers who struggle to follow its logic.

In most domino games, the player with the highest double sets the pace by playing it first and the others follow suit, each playing one to create a chain of dominoes until one player runs out or hits an impasse where no further moves can be made without exceeding a predetermined limit – then play passes to another player.