Until recently, child development specialists began to emphasize the importance of play time for the development of children's mental learning (cognitive development). Not every type of game has the same amount of benefit, only creative and imaginative games have significant contributions to children's mental and personality development.
Many parents assume that playing is not a fruitful time for children, and thought that this time was wasted. In addition, given that children are under immense pressure in a highly competitive environment, most parents tend to reduce children’s play time for the sake of other important activities, such as homework, private education, in preparation for tests and examinations. No doubt that it is in good faith for successful achievements at school.
However, research findings suggest the opposite, recommending parents to understand the importance of creative thinking. Intelligence enhancing playtime activities has significant impact on a child’s success both in life, school and work. The association of creative games during playtime therefore has led to parents adopting this new technique.
Here are few games we have compiled together that could potentially improve your child’s intelligence, memory and self-confidence.
When it comes to intelligence development amongst many games, the first that comes to mind are puzzles. The imagination of a child enables them to unite the pieces together. For example, examining and observing the image of an animal, and trying to put together the puzzle develops a child’s analytical thinking skills. Detecting the individual parts and putting the right pieces together with the correct observation and experience, is an indispensable game for intelligence and visual spacial awareness. In a puzzle, children must think and develop strategies in order to achieve the goal. This process involves problem solving, reasoning skills and developing solutions which they can later be transferred into their personal/adult life. Also, the accomplishment of achieving a goal brings so much satisfaction to a child, thus increased self-esteem.
2. Guess Who
Amongst child mental developmental games “Guess who” is probably one of the oldest games. Within a handful of cards there are popular characters. The player has to find the character by asking questions, e.g., their hair colour, eye colour, whether they wear glasses, etc. The most important factors to win in this game are been able to ask the right questions, and memorising the characters. “Guess who” can therefore be categorised as intelligence and memory enhancing type of a game (and fun too).
Games that improve intelligence for children can sometimes be quite entertaining for adults too, and Jenga is one of those games. Starting with the arrangement of 54 rectangular prisms stacked on top of each other, each piece is pulled one by one, with the objective of holding the tower together. The player who causes the tower to fall down when pulling one of the pieces loses the game. The game requires physical skill as much as attention. Choosing these type of games allows children to do plenty of brain gymnastics.
4. Various Games Played Under Parental Control
You could probably come up with so many cognitive developmental games yourself. Here are a few:
- You can ask your child to describe an object
- You could ask for names (or words) to be pronounced in a reverse order (e.g. pen à nep, bookà koob, cupàpuc).
- You could ask your child to come up with sequence of words that reads the same backwards as forwards (known as Palindrome), e.g., level, mum, noon, racecar, radar, rotator, etc.
- Count in steps of 2 up to 20 (i.e. two times table) and then repeat the same backwards (20, 18, 16, 14, …, 0).