Written By: Bassey Onwuanaku
Growing up, boardgaming wasn’t a “thing” like it is now. The games commonly found then were Ludo, Snake(Chutes) and Ladders, and Draughts or ‘Draft’ as it is called in the Nigerian local parlance. This was one game that could be found everywhere on the streets of Lagos state (where I grew up). You would find grown men at every nook and cranny playing the game and I always wondered what they enjoyed in the game.
Then came the dawn of Monopoly, Scrabble and Chess (a game I personally avoided). Who has time to seat at a computer, moving pieces across a board when there were several books I was struggling to find enough time to devour? Yes, I devoured books. I couldn’t set my eyes on an interesting book and not itch to read it.
Fast forward to many years later, I’m now grown, married and with a daughter who just couldn’t seem to sit still. Yes, I know I was a tomboy myself, having been the only girl after two boys, with my eldest brother having friends enough for the African continent, arrggh! But hers was now on a different level, having male older cousins only worsened the matter.
I noticed she loved everything that got her body moving – swimming, running, skating, biking, just you name it. It was obvious she was kinesthetically inclined and this crossed over to her learning style as well.
Thus began my foray into the world of board games, particularly games to promote learning. One day I brought home a game and she was intrigued by the game pieces. She kept asking questions which gave me the opportunity to explain a lot about the concept involved. Her need for interaction was satisfied by the moving of game pieces and other components around the boards. Learning no longer appeared like a boring chore but a fun game to play. Board games soon became her go-to tool for learning. She then began inviting her schoolmates home to play the games with her and thus helped birthed the idea of an Educational Games Café.
Now I run a child-centred café that engenders learning utilizing various table top games. The aim is to infuse fun into the learning process for kids. I also visit schools where I engage both the students and their teachers in the use of games for learning in the bid to introduce them to the joy of Gameschooling. There is nothing more fulfilling than seeing the smiles on the children’s faces when the understanding of a concept dawns on them through their interaction with any of my games and teaching aids.
AB CON Kid’s Competition is therefore an amazing opportunity for kids to be exposed to the world of fun-learning and board gaming in one place while socializing with one another with the added perk of prizes to be won. Be sure to avail your kids of this awesome, mind-stimulating experience! I look forward to seeing them. Let’s Play Our Way to Knowledge
CEO, Lyndem Edutainment