In today’s guest post, Pat Ellingson (TVO’s Creative Head of Children’s Media) explains how TVO’s new games help your children learn and tells you a few things about the public broadcaster that you may not know.
Despite what some parents might think, not all of the apps and games our kids seem to be glued to are just time-wasters. New research done by the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of Toronto shows that two new games from TVOKids can help increase a child’s capacity to learn.
Hop, Frog, Hop! and Ribbit, Frog, Ribbit! are memory games featuring cute frog characters that challenge kids to match hopping patterns or follow music note sequences that become more difficult as the player improves. Hop, Frog, Hop! can be played online here and downloaded for tablets here. Ribbit, Frog, Ribbit! can be played here and downloaded here.
The free games were developed and tested with researchers at OISE and a formal research study has shown that playing the games can improve a child’s working memory and self-regulation. These are brain functions essential to a child’s ability to learn and they are important predictors of later academic success, particularly in math.
These games are part of TVO’s extensive digital toolkit dedicated to helping kids develop the skills they need to succeed in school. An innovator in children’s educational media for more than 40 years, TVO was rated by Ontarians as both the “most trusted” and “most educational” media brand for kids in Canada in a 2011 Ipsos Reid poll. But many people don’t know that TVO is a registered charity that depends on donations from the public for a significant part of its funding.
The Ontario Ministry of Education funds 70 per cent of TVO’s operating costs, but it’s not enough to cover our current level of activity or our future innovation. Donations from the public are fundamental to our ability to create innovative content like Hop, Frog, Hop! and Ribbit, Frog, Ribbit! With government funding increasingly under pressure, raising public awareness and public financial support of TVO is more important than ever.
So, check out the free games with your kids and spread the word that TVO needs financial support to continue delivering amazing educational resources that help your kids learn. Find out more about donating here.