Looking to connect with your kids in new and innovative ways? Play Cards!
With shorter days and longer nights fast approaching, and a few significant holidays on the horizon, there’s never been a better time to engage your little ones in some creative, non-screen related downtime. It’s so easy to grab a device when we have a few extra minutes, but it’s important for families to connect in new and innovative ways, striving to find a balance that may previously have been screen time and in person fun. At Minds that Play we have made it our goal to help promote family bonding time with games that encourage development while having fun. When you think of good old-fashioned card games, you think fun, but did you know they also help promote learning and growth?
Five Ways Playing Cards with “Little’s” Has Big Benefits!
- Memorization Skills: Our game, Half-Match Monster Edition promotes memory skills in a safe, playful and engaging way.
- Matching: Children playing cards will learn to identify numbers, shapes, symbols and more and to match “like with like” whatever the game!
- Emotional skills: Interacting with others, children learn valuable life skills like how to win and how to lose while still having fun.
- Social skills and Family Time: Card games promote conversational skills, turn taking and are a great opportunity to engage in some family time with kids of all ages. Let’s face it, anyone can play cards meaning a game of cards fosters multi-generational interaction between kids, parents, even teens and grandparents. Picking up a deck of cards for a quick game around the table is something the whole family can participate in, making your little ones feel special and involved. Fun side note, courtesy of Ana Roth writing for “Bridge is Cool,” if you remember “GO FISH” fondly it’s because it gives kids an outlet to actually “yell” at their parents and to see an adult make mistakes. These too are important life skills!
- Gross and Fine Motor Skills: Learning how to hold a handful of cards involves plenty of skill, time and practice. Also manipulating those cards, picking them up, turning them over and placing them face down – these all help promote motor skills in your toddler and pre-schooler.
More and more research is suggesting that too much screen time can have a lasting impact on our ability to engage in downtime. “According to physician and researcher Dr. Stuart Brown, founder of the National Institute for Play and author of the book Play, real play is a profound biological brain process that happens in real three-dimensional life, not in virtual life.” (1)
Don’t get us wrong, Minds That Play lives in the real world and we know screens are a big part of everyone’s lives these days. Zoom and FaceTime help families to stay in touch from afar. Screen-time has become a necessary part of our lives, but if you’re looking for ways to maximize the non-screen portion of your day, card games are a great way to play! Engaging in a game of cards, whether it’s our Half Match: Monster Edition or others, requires “interaction with the real world,” that many experts agree promotes “physical activity, and imagination that isn’t present in screen play.” (2)
Reconnect with family, make Friday nights “Family Night” or set aside some downtime on a quiet Sunday afternoon to play a game of cards. Model the behavior you want to see in your children by showing them how “minds that play are learning every day!”
(1 & 2) https://www.screenfree.org/five-reasons-why-screen-free-week-is-essential-for-kids-and-families/