Let’s talk: Should you teach your grandkids card games? 40

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It wasn’t long ago that kids killed time with a deck of cards and a few rounds of Snap, Go Fish, Old Maid, Memory or Spit. But research has found these games are dying out in favour of Angry Birds and other games played on iPads, phones and other electronic devices.

A report into the gaming habits of today’s kids and their parents for Barclaycard found fewer than half of the children interviewed now play card games, and only 44 per cent of children aged between seven and 14 were even familiar with 52-card packs, let alone the games you can play with them.

Then there are all those cultural references kids could miss out on: from not knowing an Ace of Spades from a Queen of Hearts.

In addition to concerns about kids spending too much time alone, educators and parents say card games are an important way to teach children arithmetic, problem solving and tactical thinking.

Three out of four parents said they were worried that the way their children play is holding back their development. Only one in 10 thought computer games do anything to help children learn new skills.

That said, another recent study conducted by the University of London found that the learning benefits of iPads for babies and children were enormous, and they should be allowed to play with tablets from birth.

“Everything we know about child development tells us that tablet computers should not be banned for babies and toddlers,” said Professor Annette Karmiloff-Smith, who led the study.

Despite this, there is surely room in modern children’s lives for both cards,  computers and – while we’re at it – board games too (the Barclaycard report found chess had taken a significant slip in popularity in recent times, too).

Let’s talk: Do you play card games with your grandkids? Why or why not? And are you a card player yourself? 

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. We played card games with my grandparents.My grandmother said it was a part of learning like snap n fish and a lot of other games.

  2. My grandboys love dominoes & it is very good for there number/counting skills. Also good for strategising – except Mr 5 is better then I am.

  3. Card games. Board games. Dominoes. Teaching social skill ……taking turns. …..Xbox game etc isolate kids. They don’t help social skills…………but they all have their place I guess

  4. my grandchildren love visiting and playing dominoes, monopoly, and card games. Ludo was not their style. I am thinking of scrabble next hols

  5. As a Family, we still love to play cards or Family Feud. My Granddaughter does have all the mod. cons. But still loves to play these games.

  6. Card games are a practical and fun way to teach maths, and so is cooking as it teaches measures, density, time management skills etc

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