a family playing board games together to keep young minds sharp in the summer time

Keep Young Minds Sharp—Play Games!

Summertime is funtime for kids and adults of all ages.  It is time off school for most children, but you can help their brains to be sharp when school starts again.  I can think of no better way to boost the brain than playing games.  Games are a way of teaching children social skills, strategy, math, problem-solving, and language.  The kids are having so much fun that they don’t notice they’re learning.  Kids today are probably going to find a way to get screen time through television and/or video games, so what we’re focusing on is games away from the screen.

First important tip is: Parents(or Grandparents),  participate in the games with your children.

Kids love it when Mom, Dad, or Grandparents play with them. This is also opportunity for you to teach taking turns and good sportsmanship with younger children and strategy to older ones.  Of course, the main benefit is the bond you make with your favorite people.

Most all games will have teachable elements for children.  The following are some of the classic games.  All these classics have “Jr.” versions for younger children who aren’t quite ready for the regular ones.

  •  Monopoly teaches focusing on cash flow, and counting cash
  • Yahtzee teaches decision making and math
  • Clue teaches logical thinking and problem solving by process of elimination
  • Scattegories teaches word retrieval and related ideas in specific categories
  • Scrabble improves spelling, vocabulary and conversation

Other games that are great teachers are Simon and Bop-It.  These two are great for the car and both come in travel size and regular size—both portable.

Stay smart.  Make memories.  Have fun.  Play games!

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