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A Long Break Away from School Part 2

By Gina Goostree, Head of Lower School 

To continue our discussion from Tuesday, here are some more helpful ideas for a long break from school.

As today’s researchers are now discovering, all of that light-hearted play actually led to some serious child developmental benefits. I think it is high time to bring family game night out of the past and into your immediate future! Here are five big research-based reasons why:

1. Games are good for motor skills.

Every time your little ones roll the dice or shuffle the cards, they are developing their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills – which can lead to later success in sports, playing instruments, writing and more.

2. Games can lead to better grades.

Many games build specific skills that are useful in your child’s academic careers such as math, spelling, vocabulary, and general knowledge. Research from Carnegie Mellon shows that even a small amount of practice playing academic games can lead to big results in the classroom. One study found that pre-school aged children who played a simple dice-rolling and token-moving number game for just one hour over a two-week period had measurable gains in number skills. These results are important because children’s early number skills are highly related to later math achievement in school.

3. Games help your children solve problems.

Researchers from the University of Florida found that children who practice strategizing and solving problems with their parents end up having better memory techniques and more success at solving a variety of problems on their own. It also gives parents a chance to model effective problem-solving techniques for children to emulate.

4. Game night is family bonding night.

No matter what games you play, family game night provides the opportunity for you to interact with your children. This will lead to many positive outcomes for them, such as, a larger vocabulary, higher reading scores, more motivation in school, better

relationships with peers, a more positive perception of the parent-child relationship, better emotional well-being and life satisfaction.

5. Games are just plain fun!

Granted this is a different breed of fun from what you were used to during your carefree college days, and it is surely different than what your children will be calling fun in just a few short years. But for now, while everybody’s still hanging out in the house all together, make the most of it!

Make some amazing memories from these suggestions! Ask your child what they enjoy doing with you. You may be surprised it does not cost any money. Just your time because the quality time you spend with them is worth a lot more than quantities…..It is all about the MEMORIES!!!

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