If you are helping your child prepare for the 11+ verbal reasoning tests, then try the following games to put in a bit of fun into your schedule. Your child won’t even realise that they are learning skills to pass the 11+ exam.
1. Challenging crosswords – give children exposure to lots of words and therefore can improve spellings. They encourage children to use dictionaries and encyclopaedia’s but with the added benefit of being fun. You can play online here.
2. Suduko is a number puzzle game that children as young as 5 can do. For younger children you can make up grids similar to these. Sudoku improves analytical thinking in children, it teaches them elimination and logical thinking.
3. Scrabble – increases the vocabulary of a child. It teaches spelling skills to children. It enhances the mathematical skills in a child and shows us how adding one new letter can change a word or the entire meaning of a word. It helps develop critical thinking and teaches problem solving skills. It helps in developing an improved memory and concentration. Here’s a great website for playing Scrabble online.
I use scrabble tiles to help children with anagram type questions. Start with giving the child just 3 tiles (one must be a vowel) and ask to make as many words as possible. Then move up to 4 tiles and so on. Children need to be taught how to work out new words in a systematic way rather than just randomly putting the letters in order to see if they make sense. This skill of doing things logically and in sequence is a fundamental skill for verbal reasoning questions.
4. Chess – Chess is one of the best games that will make children think of different strategies to achieve victory. It improves concentration and memory and teaches children how to solve problems. Research has shown that it significantly improve mathematical ability. Please read this article for more benefits.