Games can be used to teach and reinforce a number of lessons. They can be used to build and improve communication skills, too. You’ll see the greatest success if you choose the right educational games for your child. Let’s learn how to use educational games to improve a child’s language skills.
Read to Your Child
You can use digital storybooks to read to your child. This will help them learn the names for items at early ages and the meaning of text once they hit the preschool years. Don’t be afraid to read to your child after they’ve started learning how to read. For example, most kids report that their parents don’t read to them after the age of eight. Yet children can benefit from parents reading complex material to them and explaining it. Sit with your child while they play reading heavy games and read out loud the instructions and be ready to answer questions.
Use Games to Fill in the Gaps in Their Knowledge
You can use educational games to fill in the gaps in their knowledge. This could be identifying words with long and short vowels, improving their recognition of foreign language vocabulary words or teaching them basic letters. A good game for educating your children will teach them what they need to know without forcing them to sit through lessons that they’ve already mastered. Identify the gaps in your child’s knowledge and seek out games that fill them. You can even ask your child’s teacher for recommendations or go to a site that lets you find games based on what your child needs to know.
Play Games That Make Them Answer Questions
This could take the form of trivia games, but there are reading and typing heavy navigation games, too. The goal is to find a game that makes them read a question and answer it. They need to read the question, and wrong answers will give them corrective feedback. The need to answer questions correctly will improve their reading comprehension. This is true whether it asks the child “Which square contains a red circle?” or “Which building is the sheriff in?”
Use Games to Work on Sentence Structure
There are games that teach children sentence structure. They may be similar to flashcard games, or they may feature characters saying things that are shown on screen. It may even be humorous such as showing what a sentence means if the comma is in the wrong place or the two main parts of speech are reversed.
Play Vocabulary Games
Vocabulary games are an invaluable tool for building your child’s vocabulary. Games can present a variety of definitions and images to teach children the meaning of new words. That is separate from vocabulary drills that force children to memorize the meaning of those words.
Play Games that Build Social Language Skills
Did you know that there are games that improve social skills? And they can improve your child’s ability to navigate complex social situations. For example, the game may feature a character going on an adventure. The child learns the value of saying things like please, thank you and asking for permission. Furthermore, they learn how these words are spelled and when they should be used in written and spoken dialogue. You can even use these games to teach your child what to expect if they go to the doctor or visit a friend’s house.
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