Preschool Games to Teach Mouse Skills

It is well known among parents that kids need no introduction to technology – within months of being given access to a smart phone or tablet, they are able to teach their parents a thing or two about their own mobile devices. This is true for preschool kids as well –the intuitive design of these devices make them incredibly easy for the youngest of kids to use. In fact, it is quite common to see three and four-year-olds learning preschool skills even before they begin schooling, merely by playing educational preschool games on their parents’ devices. However, the same cannot be said for all types of computer devices. While desktop computers seem as simple to use as mobile devices for many adults, preschool kids find the experience vastly different. After all, simple tasks like moving the cursor across the screen, clicking and dragging and dropping items do require a little practice to master. Furthermore, kids are rarely taught these skills at school, in spite of the increasing dependency on computers in our daily lives.Fortunately, there are several preschool games online that help the little ones develop mouse skills. Here are a few pages that offer these games:

preschool games                                  Photo Courtesy: Jennie Faber

Minimouse

Minimouse features many fun and simple preschool games designed to impart mouse skills to young kids. The games vary greatly in terms of content, but the basic principle is the same. Players use the cursor to accomplish a variety of tasks, from helping a pickle pop balloon to helping a frog catch flies. There are various levels of complexity as well, beginning with merely moving the mouse over specific objects, and then increasing to include factors such as speed and timing as well. Some of the preschool games include educational elements such as colors and shapes.

Bees and Honey

This website features three preschool games, each focusing on a different aspect of mouse control. In ‘Bees’, kids practice moving the cursor around the screen.In ‘Flowers’, kids practice moving the mouse and clicking. In ‘Honey’, kids practice clicking and dragging. The bright and colorful graphics are pleasing to the eye. All three games are based on the same theme, allowing preschoolers to focus entirely on their mouse skills without being distracted by additional game elements. The website is perfect for beginners. Kids can play each preschool game until they have mastered the relevant mouse skill before moving on to the next game.

Tidy the Classroom

This is an extremely simple preschool game with only one objective – to tidy the classroom. The game cleverly introduces various types of mouse skills through different tasks. For example, kids must move the mouse over the board to erase it, double click on the computer screen to switch it on, click on trash to throw it away and drag and drop a few objects to put them in their places. There is no time limit, so kids can take as long as they want to accomplish each task. One drawback is that the specific instruction for each object appears as text on the screen, which means that pre-schoolers will need an adult around to help them play the game.

Boobah

Boobah is a fun preschool game with no specific objective. Kids move their mouse around the colorful screen and click on the different objects to see various surprises. Some of the objects lead to other screens, with more surprises in store. Some of the surprises are mini-games in their own right. Boobah is great for getting young kids familiar with the working of a mouse, without any pressure to complete specific tasks.

With these fun and engaging preschool games, your child will be able to confidently and independently use a mouse in no time!

 

3 Quick ABC Games for Preschoolers

To promote alphabet recognition and phonic skills in preschoolers, have them play these ABC games that they’ll love!

 

ABC games
Photo by: Doug Waldron

Salt and rainbow tray with alphabets

Here’s a messy ABC game that even parents will love despite the adjective! Teach the toddlers the letters of the alphabet and develop their hand-eye coordination, motor skills, and more with this cool ABC game.

You will need a large tray, construction paper in rainbow colors (violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red), scissors, lots of salt, and a big brush for the activity. Cut out a strip each from the construction papers so that they cover the base of the tray. Place them on the tray, making sure no space is left empty! Glue the papers and let them dry. Coat with a generous layer of salt and give the brush to the kids. Let them ‘write’ alphabets by playing with the brush on the salt and revealing the rainbow colors beneath. You can choose to instruct the kids to write specific alphabets too, to test their retention power. Use this platform to help kids improve their hand-eye coordination and motor skills by allowing them to draw random patterns, transfer salt from one part of the tray to another, rub their palms on the salt, etc.

Clothesline alphabet game

Learning methods that do not use traditional instruments such as pens and paper excite kids to no end. So, here is an ABC game that will help reinforce alphabet recognition skills in kids with a fun approach. Cut out 52 squares of construction papers in two different colors and put up a fairly long clothesline in your living room. Write uppercase A-Z on 26 squares and in lowercase on the remaining 26 squares. Clip the uppercase letters to the clothesline and space them out randomly. Hand over the lowercase squares to the kids and ask them to look for their uppercase counterpart and clip them together. There’s nothing like hands-on activities to teach the little ones new skills and give them some practice, is there?

Letters in the sand

This ABC game will improve kids’ attention spans, visualization, and memory, besides doing the obvious – developing letter and sound recognition skills. Place wooden alphabets in a shallow but large tray and cover them up with colorful sand bought from a stationery store. Have the kids sift through the sand with a paint brush; they must avoid using their hands as that makes the activity fairly easy and less challenging for preschoolers. They have to look for the buried letters but can take them out of the tray only if they manage to sound it out correctly, otherwise the letter goes back under the heap of sand!

If you don’t want the kids to play with sand because of the hazards associated with it – getting into the eye, allergies, etc. – you can use rice instead. Add food coloring and any fruity essence to the rice and dry it in the sun. Bury the letters in the rice and have them treasure-hunt for the letters. Just like the sand activity, the kids will get to keep the letter if they sound it right, otherwise you know what to do!