With the rise of technology and the gaming industry over the past decade, parents all over the world have become wary of their kids using computers, tablets, and smartphones in their free time. The general consensus is that children spend too many hours playing various games and using apps, and not enough of their time outside or doing something useful—like reading.
However, what most parents tend to forget is that technology and games alike have become such a regular part of our (and our children’s) everyday lives that they have managed to sneak into the education system, as well. In fact, it’s now easier than ever to motivate your kid to learn something new—all you have to do is present the matter at hand as a fun and engaging game.
Now, we’re not talking about Candy Crush Saga or Angry Birds, but rather educational online games, meant to teach our kids about the world around them, help them develop their skills, and introduce new areas of life in a seamless way. Educational games come in the form of not only classic board and card games, but also apps, interactive puzzles, and video games, which can keep your kids occupied and entertained for hours.
What’s important to remember is this: online games are neither your nor your child’s enemy. If used correctly, they can make a world of a difference in their education and encourage them to want to learn more.
So, why should you invest in learning games? We have five reasons that will show you how beneficial they can be.
1. Educational Games Improve Your Child’s Memory Capacity
Every time your kids are required to track a certain narrative, solve a problem, or memorize something particular from their game, their memory capacity improves. A wide variety of educational games, both online and e.g. board games are powerful enough to affect your children's focus and memory alike. Even kids who don’t have long attention spans enjoy playing games due to the fact that they offer different reward systems.
Plus, through fun board games, concentration and mathematics activities (all of which require repetition and memorization for success), kids develop skills that will prepare them for any tests and quizzes they might need to take in the future.
2. They Help with Problem-solving and Strategic Thinking
You’ve probably noticed by now that a lot of games involve your children having to think quickly and come up with necessary solutions in order to finish a game. More often than not, they have to think ahead (turn on those wheels in their amazing brains) to complete a certain level. This develops their logic skills and strategic thinking which, like improving memory capacity, can come in handy later in life and allow them to think outside of the box and on their feet.
3. Learning Games Further Develop Your Kids’ Motor Skills
You’re probably aware of the fact that physical interaction is highly important when it comes to developing and advancing your child’s motor skills. Well, educational games can include quite a bit of moving around, which can help your children coordinate their body with their brain a lot better. Electronic games, on the other hand, are meant to improve hand-eye coordination and visual focus.
Take for example the classic game of Twister or one of our very own Explorer boxes which combine treasure hunts and mask plays with the augmented reality app, enabling your children to both move around and play on their tablets or smartphones.
4. They Boost Your Kids’ Self-esteem and Social Interactions
Believe it or not, educational games (both video and regular ones) have been known to improve children’s self-esteem and leave them feeling accomplished. Like we mentioned above, games like these offer rewards for completed tasks and inspire kids to do well in other areas of their life and take productive risks.
Of course, we shouldn’t forget about the impact of educational games on social interactions and relationships. When kids play together, they learn how to work with one another in order to solve the problems at hand and how to communicate to get to the best results. That way, they develop their communication, mediation, and diplomacy skills—all of which they’ll need once they grow up.
5. Educational Games Encourage Children to be as Creative as Possible
Every parent wants their child to be creative—we want them to draw, act, craft great things, play instruments, and be imaginative. What better way to help them pursue their creativity than by allowing them to play a game such as, for example, Pictionary or Dixit? Any game which makes them come up with ideas of their own and think outside the norm can only be good for their creative processes.
After all, kids love making up things as they go, so why not put that to good use? Have them come up with stories with our own Explorer boxes or draw and guess objects from Pictionary, and soon you’ll notice that they’ll become more creative and begin to develop their unique personalities.
The next time someone mentions a game or an app, don’t immediately assume that it’s a bad thing. Think back to this list of ours and remember that there is a whole world of educational games out there that can help your child out in terms of self-esteem, various skills, and creativity. Yes, we do live in an ever-evolving world of technology, but instead of treating these games and apps like enemies, try treating them as friends, instead. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the results you’ll get.