Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Memory Game. An Update.

In my first blog post, I mentioned how I've used the Original Memory® Game as an educational game. This game has been through a lot in our house and continues to provide endless learning opportunities. You may or may not remember the latest idea I wanted to try: use the cards to teach categories. Well, there's a little update.

What you need

For this game, we only use one of each pair. I knew there was a reason why I kept all the cards that have lost its pair. At any rate, before calling the boys over, I set aside various categories from the cards: food, bugs, animals, things that fly, things with wheels. Plus, I add one item to each group that does not belong in the category.

How to play
  1. Set out the cards for the category, plus the card that does not belong. Start with something more simple, like "foods."
  2. Talk to your child about what items are there. Here, you can be overly obvious. You can talk about the colors, the sizes what they are. 
  3. Initially, you may have to coach them through. Ask, "Can we eat some of these?" They will likely say, "YES!!!" Then, point to each one and ask if that item can be eaten. I promise you, they will laugh when you get to the obviously wrong one. I asked, "Can you eat an airplane?" After the giggles subsided, they shook their heads, "No, Mommy. That's silly!! You can't eat airplanes." Follow up with, "Does this belong with the other foods?" You will help them say, "No."
  4. Quickly move on to the next one. This is why I suggest having all your categories ready. It keeps their attention.
The boys, specifically Regus #1, really love this. He has even chimed in on creating his own categories, as well. It's so much fun to see their little brains getting a workout. Plus, they think I'm pretty funny when I ask if you can "eat" an airplane.  See, I'm not always so serious.

I've found that the Original Memory® Game is the most versatile, as they are not movie related. I've heard that some of the movie versions are actually hard because there are only slight variations between the different pairs. That sounds cool, but I like that I can get so much more value out of the original version by sorting by color and category. I really shouldn't slam another version until I try it. Well, I guess that means I'll be on the lookout for a clearance-priced Memory® game.

What other ways do you like to teach categories?


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