With recent plans from the Government to reintroduce Reception and Year 6 back into schools, many children will have to remain at home to learn. This got OnBuy thinking about the best ways to help teach kids at home in a fun and engaging way as, let's face it, it can be tough to stay motivated at the moment.
OnBuy spoke to Leon Hady, an expert headteacher, who believes that games are the best way to encourage children to learn whilst at home. He said:
"I would highly recommend the use of games to engage students and encourage them to 'see' subjects and subject materials in a different way. Games specifically made to educate, and non-directly educationally focused games, provide a worthy bridge to traditional education."
Leon Hady, Headteacher
As a result, we sought to discover the best educational games your children can play at home, whilst supporting the school curriculum. We also surveyed parents to find out what they think about using games in the home classroom, too.
Pexels/Julia M Cameron
The best educational games to help with homeschooling
A great way to teach children English is to introduce Scrabble into your homeschooling routine! Not only is this a great game for spelling, but it has a competitive edge which can be fun. If you don't have a scrabble board at home, or you don't have time to play along (due to work commitments, for example), there's an online option called Endless Alphabet, which allows your child to play along with a computer!
With maths, why not try Maths-Games.org? This website looks to provide a wide variety of mathematical games that help encourage mental maths. When it comes to the classics, a quick game of blackjack will help the counting… up to 21 at least!
Science can be a tricky subject to conquer at home, but Wow Science has a great selection of free science-related resources that your kids will be sure to love!
When it comes to knowing the difference between Churchill and Caesar, BBC Bitesize's History section is one of the best options. Not only does it provide a wealth of information and activities to try at the end, it's also narrated by some high-profile names, such as Danny Dyer!
For music, OnBuy found that Classics for Kids is a great resource with useful insight into musical notes and terms. If you're looking for some more light-hearted fun, then you can't go wrong with some karaoke fun or pot and pan drums, too!
Art is a subject known for its freedom and expression. To encourage your children to get arty and creative, OnBuy suggests playing a game like 'Simon draws'. Alternatively, let their mind loose with pens and paintbrushes and get your kids to draw their favourite Disney characters as a fun break from the more focused learning.
There can only be one answer for this section: the fun language learning app, 'Duolingo'. It provides a simple roadmap to improve your language skills, both writing and speaking, and is easy for kids to grasp thanks to the range of interactive learning games.
For any budding geographer, the game Animal Jam is OnBuy's top pick. The game, partnered with National Geographic, aims to teach children about the world around them, learning about different lands, ecosystems and animals, through educational fun play.
Survey results: What do parents think?
To support the school curriculum, OnBuy surveyed parents to get their opinions on using games in homeschooling. Of the 1,143 parents we spoke to, they said the following about using games whilst homeschooling:
- 73% of the parents we asked said they had used games to try and help homeschool their kids.
- Of those that did incorporate games into learning, 67% of those said it had a positive effect on their child's learning.
- 44% of parents said the main benefit was that their child/children were more invested in learning than previously.
- 64% of parents think that using games that families can play together (e.g. Scrabble and Blackjack) are most effective.
- 6% said they didn't want their children to play games for education and wanted them to stick to traditional forms of education.
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