5 Ways to Prevent Brain Drain During School Closures

April 21, 2020 / Parent Resources

“The activities that are the easiest, cheapest, and most fun to do – such as singing, playing games, reading, storytelling, and just talking and listening – are also the best for child development.” ~ Jerome Singer, American Clinical Psychologist

It’s important to keep kids’ minds engaged while schools are closed because any learning loss can lead to academic challenges when classes restart. Adding fun games for kids and activities to their schedule helps protect against learning loss, otherwise known as “brain drain.” Osmo recommends trying these five activities for kids at home to keep learning on track and avoid brain drain.

1.Talk to your kids

Many of the comments parents make to their kids throughout the day are directives like “eat your dinner” or “put your toys away.” Deeper, two-sided conversations are essential for developing kids’ cognitive and language skills. One way to foster these types of conversations is by selecting a topic for your children to explore and then asking them to share what they learned at dinner time. Posing open-ended questions ensures everyone has a chance to speak at length.

2.Visit a museum, aquarium, planetarium, or zoo (virtually)

Many of these facilities are using apps and websites to offer virtual tours and access to exhibitions during the crisis. These virtual tours can inspire interest in topics like STEAM and geography, while also helping kids keep their reading skills sharp. One way for kids to dive deeper— and hone their writing skills— is by journaling about their experience. 

3.Break a sweat

Exercise is great for the body and the brain! There’s endless fun to be had in the backyard. Play frisbee, try out a new sport, or set up an elaborate treasure hunt with clues. Any physical activity that requires quick thinking will go a long way in preventing brain drain.

4.Merge screen time with real-world learning

If your child’s eyes are constantly glued to the TV screen, you should definitely check out educational games for tablets that teach subjects like math, coding and art. The Osmo Explorer Starter Kit helps kids practice freestyle thinking while developing spatial and visual problem-solving skills. This kit with iPad learning games has everything from math and spelling activities, to tangrams, coding, and even freehand drawing!

5.Play card games

We love creative thinking games for tablets, but if you’d rather stick to analog fun, traditional card games are always crowd-pleasers. Plus, card games give kids an opportunity to practice strategy and negotiation, both of which are essential skills for development.

By adding some of these activities and educational games to your child’s routine, you can prevent brain drain while keeping the whole family entertained. Have fun and stay healthy!