Educational games for middle school kids can be as simple as a quick game of Monopoly or as intricate as math drills. Ahhh! Those middle school years. Your child still loves to have fun, but so many of the games that entertained him when he was younger are now deemed as "babyish". Fortunately, there are many creative options available to keep the middle school student entertained while still allowing him to learn new skills.
Middle School Fun/Game Days
Why not host a game day at your house and invite your middle schooler's friends? Games can involve manual dexterity and hand/eye coordination such as water balloon tosses or Frisbee; or try board games such as Apples to Apples which can help students learn new words and expand their vocabulary skills. Here are a few other ideas for game day:
- Dance Offs
- Big Brain Academy Competitions (video game)
- Chess Tournament
Educational games for middle school kids can also include games that boost brain power. Many of these games can be used in a school setting or adapted for family or party use. Use your creativity to come up with additional ideas, but here are a few:
- Make up your own game of Jeopardy, using topics the kids are studying in school or as a review of topics studied in the last school year. This can be a fun way to study for an upcoming test too.
- Trivial Pursuit offers many different versions where your middle schooler can test his brain power in various topics. Even wrong answers offer an opportunity for learning about new topics.
- Create a mystery game and invite over some of your child's friends. Have the kids seek out clues and guess who committed the crime. Gather prizes for the winning team.
- Scrabble can be fun for a large group. Again, offer awards for the winners with the highest score and other prizes for the longest word, the person who uses the most difficult letters (X, Z, Y), and so on.
Online Educational Games for Middle School Kids
Your child is growing up. While he isn't yet old enough to be involved in teen activities, the activities from elementary school are too young for him. It can be difficult to find books, magazines and online sites that are appropriate for a middle schooler. There are some great online sites that offer games geared at just this age level. Here are a few:
- It's My Life-PBS brings you a site geared toward middle school aged children. Games include what to do when Mom leaves you in charge of the house, how to be your own boss and run a business, and how to control rumors and not be a gossip monger.
- eSchool Online-offers some inventive games, such as one where an eye can be dissected so students can learn about how the human eye works and virtual experiments involving magnets and DNA sampling.
- Quiz Hub-for the child who enjoys a challenge, this site offers quizzes on topics such as multiplication facts, spelling, money, SAT vocabulary (it's never too early to start building these skills!), history and even the periodic table.
There are dozens and dozens of educational games for middle school kids which parents and teachers can purchase, such as:
- Super Sentence-complete sentences by using the 5 W's of who, what, where, when and why.
- Language Detective-for grades 5-12. As the child goes around the board, he will look for spelling, punctuation and capitalization errors.
- Road Block-an easy and fun way to teach children map reading skills.
- Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?-these computer games teach children geography, problem solving and history skills.
- Farkle-kids will have a hard time deciding if the game or the name of the game is more fun. Players must add numbers quickly in their mind in this game of chance, which strengthens math skills.
- Lewis and Clark Adventure Game-players go around the board and through the wilderness as they learn about American history and geography.
These are just a few of the options available. Don't rule out the value of learning about the world around you. Many kids learn the most hands on, and some of the best educational games for middle school kids include scavenger hunts and nature exploration in their own neighborhood.