MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – It turns out that there may have been a benefit to all this virtual schooling.
It seems like parents and kids have found new ways to learn with video game-like apps, and they want to keep going.
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A new study found that with regular use of digital learning apps, students were able to catch up with their more skilled peers by closing the gap by up to 87%.
Paco Bawar learned the uncertainties of life very early on. In the middle of her kindergarten year at Mahtomedi, her parents – who are nurses – suddenly became educators.
“It was kinda crazy,” mom Katherine Bawar said. “My husband, me, like we’re not natural teachers, it’s just not our thing. “
The timing couldn’t have been worse for Paco. He was receiving extra help with reading and was barely starting to improve when school stopped. Katherine shared the anxieties of the other parents.
“I’m so worried about what’s going to happen next, what’s going to happen next, where is his reading going, is he going to be late,” she said.
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So the family decided to make the most of the screen time and use an online learning app that acts like a video game.
Paco started spending an hour a day using ABCmouse, a program that teaches children to read while cuddling them with pleasure, as we learned from Nika Fabienke, Senior Curriculum Director at Age of Learning.
“Our players are supposed to just see fun, see bright colors and ABCs, songs and games, but if you look under the hood, it’s all designed by educators,” said Nina.
And now, in his second year, Paco is excelling and thriving, reading fluently and with confidence.
“Nothing’s going to take the place of worksheets and handwriting and all of that stuff, but if it looks like a game, it doesn’t look like work,” Katherine said.
The company that makes ABCmouse says computer game learning has skyrocketed since the pandemic, and the hope is it will help close the learning loss gap and bring relief to parents.
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