Educational Apps that enable parents and children to learn together
Often parents don’t realise the importance of their influence and input when it comes to their child’s learning. Even more that school, getting the learning environment right in the home makes a huge difference to a child’s long-term academic success..
Here at the Educational App Store, we are always looking for apps that can open up a learning dialogue in the home, helping parents and children connect and allowing parents to play a part in their child’s day-to-day learning.
Here are my top tips for you to get involved in an effective way:
- Open questioning. When using apps with your child, don’t just ask closed (yes/no) questions around the learning. A question that focuses on: what, why, when, who or how – will open up the discussion, give children an opportunity to explain fully and give you an opportunity to assess their thinking.
- Encourage them to be the teacher. One of the best ways to cement a concept is to ask a child to teach it to someone else. Set up some scenarios so that your child can explain or teach a concept to a younger sibling, to you or a grandparent. It a great motivator and will help them develop good presentation skills too!
- Don’t be afraid to show your fallibility.Show them you don’t know it all and you make mistakes too! Children can be afraid of trying new things or pushing themselves if they think they might not get it right. Showing them you get things wrong too, will help them realise that’s OK; in fact we often learn best through our mistakes!
- Give constructive and specific praise. Giving praise and encouragement is really motivational for children (and adults too, right?!) but going over the top with the praise makes it less meaningful. Try to say why you are praising something and what it is that they did well – “Wow, that’s amazing!” is not as useful to a child as “Wow, I love your mathematical thinking! You worked out that sum much faster than last time…”
- Last but not least is having fun! Showing children that you enjoy learning and especially that you enjoy learning things with them, makes learning a joy to do together and will encourage them to want to learn on their own too. Find some apps that you find fun, together!