I remember being 10, preparing for my 11+ and HATING the tedious repetitive work. I remember being in primary school and being bored. I liked studying, but sometimes I just wanted to play a game and it is the same for every student out there.
So if your child (or student if you are a tutor) is struggling to focus, here are several ways to ‘play’ and learn as well.
Among Us, is a game in which players complete basic tasks aboard a spaceship, while one or more of the players is an imposter who is trying to sabotage and kill the crew. If you struggle to understand it, think of it as a digital variant on the party game Wink Murder. It is short, can be easily picked up and is free to play (simply click here)
Play Among Us in a different language. Players of Among Us typically use group calls or chats to discuss who they think is an imposter. On its own, this is valuable for learning how to work remotely as a team (a skill all of us have been developing over the past year), but you can make it more educational by encouraging your child to do this in their target language, either with their fellow students, or with international buddies.
Write a thinkpiece on the game. Taking the perspective of a journalist, how would your child write about Among Us, and introduce this phenomenon to an audience that isn’t familiar with it? They can discuss the growth in video game live streaming, or consider why Among Us has been so successful in the pandemic.
Set up an offline Among Us with tasks that relate to studying. With a bit of creativity, your child and their friends or study pod can recreate Among Us either offline or through online learning platforms. Instead of completing small tasks to repair the station, they could solve a Maths formula, label the parts of a sentence, or assign dates to events in History. Getting this set up will take work, but that can be part of the challenge for your child.
Use Among Us as a case study in communication. It’s likely that your child communicates differently when using Among Us than when, say, they’re at school, or talking to you. But they probably do this instinctively, without really thinking about what they’re doing. Get your child to write a guide to how to communicate around Among Us: is there particular vocabulary that they use? How formal do they tend to be? Are there techniques they use to keep a poker face when they’re the imposter? This is a great way to get your child thinking analytically about the ways we communicate in different scenarios.
Make Among Us a reward. Many students like to use the Pomodoro time management technique to get work done: 25 minutes of dedicated hard work, followed by 5 minutes of relaxation. Setting a timer in this way helps beat procrastination and encourages students to focus. Because Among Us games are typically very short – only a few minutes to play one round – they’re an ideal way to take a break between 25-minute Pomodoro sessions.