As the Headmaster of Trio World School in Bangalore, possibly the best school in India! Every once in a while parents will ask me what educational games they should buy their children to help them with learning at school, so in answer to this I thought I would just jot down a few points.
Experience has shown that no matter however much you pay for a book or game, the cost or product is not as important as the quality of the time you as an adult spend with your child, playing, reading, imagining with them and above all listening to them.
However please note that they can tell if you are giving all your attention to them or whether your mind is really concerned with something else. So when time is limited, make the education period shorter if you need to, but commit yourself 100% to your child for that space of time.
Everyone knows that a good education is vital to give children a positive start with the competition they'll face in today's job market. For everything you do, you need to be able to have a reasonable education, whether it be as simple as reading a newspaper, logging on to a computer, navigating with a map, drawing a diagram, filling out a medical form or even just making polite conversation! If your child’s educational ability is poor, you are very likely to find them being hindered in many areas of their life.
No good parent would willingly handicap their children’s future, but many parents don't understand how easy it can be to help children gain knowledge by getting them started when they are at a very young age. There are many different ways available for parents to peak the interest of their young children, one way to foster creativity is with bright colours, books or simply pictures featuring objects or animals familiar to the youngster that include a name. This will help create a real interest in study by giving them a connection with learning.
A great yet simple way to start is to read any books or tell a real or imaginary story from when you were a child, especially your own favourites. These will help you with adding emotion, do not be afraid to create different voices in the stories you tell. A good resource is to ask friends and family for ideas about what their child liked best.
Your child’s teacher can also give suggestions for areas of learning that have good age appropriate value. If you have access, another good place to look is on the internet as there are many websites with suggestions of learning activities which you can do with your children.
Many parents just buy toys and books for their children but fail to use them with the child, playing with your children is important and even if funds are tight and toys and books are not on the priority list, you can use a scrap of paper with a made up dot-to-dot or use your imagination to create and stimulate your kids. Try games like ‘I Spy’ or finding objects beginning with a particular colour, shape or substance.
Another good idea is to ask family and friends whose children have grown whether they'd be willing to part with any of their children's toys and books. These are some ideas to give you a start; you're bound to think of more learning games to play with your children. When you do share them with your friends and family with kids, every connection made here stimulates others.
Remember children learn through play so the more quality play time you spend with your young child, the more interested in education they'll become and want to learn by themselves. This is just what you want as the more they learn through play, the better they'll become at educating themselves later on in life. Make learning fun and not a chore; always make a game of it, even to the point they don’t know that they are learning, and when you think they might be ready, challenge them to try something harder, but don’t be disheartened if they fail. Ask them easy questions about a story which you have created to see if they understood what it was about.
You will notice my recommendations aren’t costly in anything other than your time and they don't have to take long, but they are better when they are done often, as this helps to form a real education habit in your youngster.
Learning with your child improves their confidence which is something that can be held above academics. When you take the time to play a learning game or read or recount a story it will enhance vocabulary and language skills and enabling the child to express themselves better.
In a nutshell, the best learning gift you can give to help your child learn a sense of responsibility and accountability for what they choose to do, to develop their critical thinking and problem solving abilities is simply to spend some quality time with them.
Trio World School (Headmaster)