Summer Games, Apps To Sharpen Mental Skills

You may not be a teacher, but you are your child’s biggest advocate and mentor.

Don’t let your child’s brain become dormant this summer.

Continue to build cognitive skills and expand his/her ability to problem solve, interpret, reason and increase working memory.

Well-developed cognitive skills are essential for performing well socially, academically and professionally.

Sharpening mental skills improves learning and builds self-esteem – healthy foundations for overall academic success.

Summer is an ideal time to incorporate fun activities into your child’s day.

Carving out time to sit down and make your child do “school work” will almost always result in failure.

To be an effective parent is to be sneaky about teaching your child. In other words, have fun!

Fun apps, brain busters or family game night are good places to start.

Sneak a fun game or two in on your IPad a couple of times a day. Some of my favorite apps are Brain HQ, Tangrams HD, Chain Thought, Montezuma Puzzle, TanZen Lite, Word to Word, Learning Ally and BrainPop.

Take time to sit with your child to participate. Believe me, your children will build confidence as they supersede you at the games – while building neurological pathways and developing cognitive skills.

Another one of my favorite ways to keep children’s skills sharp is family game night.

Munching on popcorn and playing games will not only build traditions and make memories but train your child’s brain.

Some of my favorite games include Simon, which builds memory. Yahtzee Flash allows your child to solve a variety of equations with a simple roll of the dice – a great way to make math fun!

What’s in the Cat’s Hat is a preschool problem solving game that is colorful, fun and engaging.

Guidecraft’s Mini Unit Blocks are an entertaining way to visually and mechanically solve puzzles.

Wheel of Fortune and Scrabble are sure to build your child’s vocabulary, critical thinking and spelling skills. Monopoly is full of problem solving, reasoning, math and decision making.

Finally, take pictures of summer activities and let your child journal a few sentences or more, describing the activity.

Your child will develop writing skills and you will have a keepsake.

By challenging your child’s curious mind, results will follow!