Posts Tagged ‘travel games’

Educational Achievement of Kids Heavily Influenced by Parents

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

The summer school holidays are looming. Time to wind down and enjoy the time with the children, well at least until they get bored. Education takes a back seat, GCSE’s, A level  exams and SAT tests are all in the past and now is the time to forget about school and get and about with the kids. Ignoring the price hikes applied by every sales company who see you as a captive audience in the now peak travel season this is a marvelous opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. You can overcome boredom by paying educational games especially the  travel games that you and the kids will enjoy together. Importantly they will turn the bored free time into highly rewarding and productive learning that is also, crucially, great fun.

Teachers have ploughed through elements of the national curriculum throughout the year. The law of averages will mean some children will have grasped the lessons extremely well, some will have average understanding and some will have struggled. Doesn’t matter which category any child falls into a little extra help will stimulate the learning progress despite their ability. Keeping the educational flow going is the answer and six or eight weeks of school holiday can be a long time for young grey cells to stagnate.

Some surprising news has also recently emerged. Research indicates  Google is creating a backwards step in learning. Apparently being able to easily Google something reduces the intelligence otherwise required to seek and reason. We are tending to believe that Google has the right and only answer to any question. The ability  for children to seek facts and determine their relevance and accuracy is being lost. Learning from  errors and mistakes is becoming eroded as we begin to lack the exposure to options. We now take the information displayed by Google as gospel, and are heavily  influenced by the ranking and advertisements displayed. If it doesn’t show up in the search engine we are being led to believe nothing else exists which could be relevant to our inquiry.

Similarly we tend to believe that school is the sole arbiter of learning. There is nothing else we as parents should or could do otherwise we could be interfering and undermine the teachers. But ironically this is the exact opposite of the facts. As parents we have  a vital role to play in the continuing schooling of of our children. And the fun activities now available cover the whole spectrum of learning  have a double edged benefit. They help children to practice the lesson content at their own pace, building understanding and speed, and  also provide parents with an insight into the contemporary ability of their child.

Conventional homework tends to be one dimensional. Children predominately find it a chore and difficult to get parents actively involved. Educational games on the other hand provide a fun base for the mutual interaction between parent and child. The games provide a great opportunity to practice the lesson content boosting the learning retention by the child. Turning learning into fun holds huge potential and with the school summer holidays  looming playing some travel games has a double the benefit of having fun learning whilst on the move.

Are Educational Games the Ideal Travel Companion

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

The annual SAT’s, end of year exams, GCSE and A levels are a distant memory.  Time to relax, take off and enjoy the summer holiday.  Playing educational travel games is a great way to have fun during those long journeys by car, train, boat or plane.

Educational travel games are available in many forms.  Playing cards, board games, puzzles and quizzes generally have a huge advantage – no batteries!  Designed by educationalists rather than video game developers the key ingredients are  having fun whilst stimulating the learning process, ideal for bored children and to offset the “are we there yet?”questions.

There are many games to play in the car like I-Spy or the first to spot a truck with a company name beginning with an “A” then successively through the alphabet.   The range of educational games suitable as travel companions has extended over the years perhaps keeping pace with our more extended journeys.  The variety of subjects covered is growing all the time; in fact it is difficult to find a subject in the national curriculum that does not have a travel game associated with it.

The essential benefit of the freedom from school is to allow you time to spend with your family.  Educational games are essentially a fun way to use the time together to include a little learning in disguise and conversation without putting your children in front of video game where they watch in silence.

Stop Travel Boredom Through Educational Games

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

The school holidays create  real quality time opportunities with the children. To help deal with the inevitable “Mum I’m bored” and “Are we there yet?” bursts of enthusiasm from the kids, keen2lean has a number of educational travel games ready to hand. Some are ideal for that glass case marked “break glass in an emergency.”

Those wet days or the long journeys we all love as parents can have their moments. You have run out enthusiasm for yet another round of I spy; the clues have become just too ridiculous! Ideally you want  games that are fun easy to play and have  educational content.

“No one really wants to think about school during the holidays so the best the travel games have a hidden content; learning in disguise as we call it” says Alistair Owens MD at keen2learn. The latest range just added to keen2learn are decks of cards called Fun Decks. Packed in flip top tin they can be played for minutes or hours; the rules are simple, based  on the curriculum  and  they are used in schools to great effect. Now parents and grandparents can play these games knowing  they are encouraging learning with the children. A wide range of literacy games are available covering everything from irregular verbs, understanding inferences to  synonyms all as a decks of 56 cards.

For the kids who believe it’s impossible to have fun without ear phones the educational game Bunja is ideal. It uses MP3 technology to incorporate a range of maths games. Bunja has some very clever aspects; it learns how the child is performing and adjust the level of questions  up or down in difficulty. It also lets parents and teachers check on a child’s performance with a summation feature.  The game rewards the child with a chapter of an interactive story set in the jungle. Each time a set of questions is answered  they can  interact with the next chapter of the story.

Children understandably don’t like homework thrown in their face especially during holidays. But the benefits of practising what they are learning through educational games has a huge impact on their ongoing capacity to learn . Making it fun where all the family can join in helps loose the schoolwork stigma. Nothing new,  teachers do this in the class and all the games on the keen2learn site are used extensively by teachers.

Mealtime Trauma Is Transformed Into Conversation With Educational Fink Card Games.

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

Our modern lifestyle can often interrupt the flow of conversation in families. Mealtime, once the ideal opportunity to talk can be fragmented. Ideas, comments and observations can be excluded from the normal discussion platform. That was until highly popular Fink Discussion cards that include games for the Family, Teenagers and Travel and  were launched that are now part of the Keen2learn range of PSHE educational games.

Developed by a mother of four Lisa Warner said “As a child I was nervous and awkward, I hated socialising and was very shy. When I had children I knew that more than anything that I wanted them to be confident and not afraid to talk to others. I made some cards to help us at mealtimes, as they were often stressful when the children were young. It was pretty chaotic; my husband and I would end up getting stressed and shouting at the kids. The Fink discussion cards really transformed our mealtimes and we haven’t looked back! What started off as a great way to amuse the kids at mealtimes became something much more, I couldn’t believe the confidence it gave us! Speaking to others seemed natural and not awkward at all. My children grew into confident young people and I found a love of conversation.”

The games, ideal for family use can also used as teaching resources in school and youth groups. The Warner family, are chatty, confident, communicators. Every night at 6.30 you can find them round the dining table eating, laughing, arguing and generally having a great time. Mealtimes often roll into the evening with everyone staying to chat long after the dinner is finished. The household is alive and vibrant!

“ Lisa Warner’s Fink Cards are some of the most exciting and creative ideas I’ve ever seen to stimulate family conversation and connection. Any family would want them in their home as a key component to the harmony and understanding we are all looking for.”   Lynne Franks Founder of the SEED Women’s Network

“If you’re having trouble persuading your taciturn children to do more than grunt at mealtimes, mother-of-four Lisa Warner’s new Fink Cards could be just what you need.”

“We have had so much fun with these cards and all learnt new stuff about each other. They have been a brilliant way of getting kids to want to sit and eat their tea. Sophie has taken to them so so much she wants to play them with her friends too. They have made all of us get involved in talking to each other – such a simple idea but works fantastic. I would recommend these for all ages most definitely. My mum asked if she can borrow them at Christmas as it would be brilliant fun with lots of us!” Sharon mother of 3

“Everyone in the office loves them! We’ve now got a daily ritual of having a cuppa in the afternoon and a Fink card. They are absolutely brilliant”. Commissioning Editor – Real People Magazine

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