When the pandemic started in 2020, many thought that online education would be a temporary setup. Unfortunately, the Delta and Omicron variants have forced many schools to remain in the digital sphere. Thousands of school districts in the United States have re-transitioned to remote learning to mitigate the spread of the Omicron variant and accommodate the labor shortages caused by spiking COVID-19 cases.
Many parents worry that extended school closures will have negative effects on their children’s growth. The impact of online education on children’s social development is especially daunting. Without opportunities to connect with their peers, students may feel disengaged and unmotivated to succeed academically. Younger children who don’t get one-on-one interactions may even fail to develop social skills. Remote communication also hinders students from practicing how to read and communicate emotional cues.
To help children develop their social skills during the era of remote learning, parents need to encourage participation in social activities, such as outdoor games, board games, and storytelling. Below, we’ll discuss a few activities that can promote the social development of children.
Outdoor Team Games
Team games like Capture the Flag Redux encourage children to learn how to work with others. When playing a team game, children get to share a goal with their teammates, which can teach them to care about the desires and feelings of people outside themselves. Seeing that goal through allows them to foster a sense of camaraderie, further building their ability to connect with the people around them.
Glow Battle is another outdoor game kids can try. By facing off using harmless glowing swords, your children can hone their competitive sides and build confidence. The game can teach them how to compete with others while staying friendly and respectful.
Playing these team games as a family can help your children build their social skills. If you think they’re ready to meet other kids, you can try to talk to your neighbors and arrange playdates with their children.
Creating a scavenger hunt is another great way to teach your children how to work with others. Like team games, scavenger hunts let children experience what it’s like to share a common goal. As your children work toward finding a prize together, they learn to share ideas, move as a group, and play into each other’s strengths. Not only does this teach children how to cooperate, but it also stimulates their minds and promotes positive decision-making.
Playing board games like Monopoly, The Game of Life, and Clue can do a lot for your child’s development. Mental stimulation board games can help children strengthen their creativity, inquisitiveness, and even brain speed. And because board games encourage children to take turns and communicate verbally, they can teach children how to be comfortable with social interactions. Winning board games can also help children build confidence in themselves, which can give them the self-assurance they ned to overcome shyness
Telling stories can offer some surprising benefits for your child’s development. Stories provide a framework for how social interactions work in real life. A good storytelling session can also stretch your child’s imagination. When they begin to care about the characters they witness in stories, they may use their newfound imagination to put themselves in the shoes of these fictional characters, feeling connected to their successes, failures, and challenges. The practice of immersing themselves in the lives of fictional characters can teach them how to feel empathy for their peers. Reading books and making puppet shows are some ways you can create story-time sessions for your children.
Don’t let the pandemic be a hindrance to your child’s development. Through activities like outdoor games, scavenger hunts, board games, and storytelling, children can learn how to understand, work with, and support their peers.
Written by Emery Peyton for starluxgames.com
We wanted to share the great news that our exciting glow in the dark game Capture the Flag REDUX has been featured in the popular Daily Mom Blog in their article, “How to Teach Your Kids to Unplug From Tech and Get Fit.”
Here is a quote from the article:
“A game that is great for all ages is Capture the Flag REDUX. It’s the classic Capture the Flag game revolutionized with futuristic glow-in-the-dark lights. The whole family will be entertained as they break teammates out of jail, sneak into enemy territory, protect bases, and steal the glowing flag to win.”
We’ve been tossing around ideas on how to throw an unforgettable Capture the Flag Redux party. After some brainstorming, we have come up with a bunch of terrific ideas and tips for making a kids’ party top notch. One member of our team suggested that before the party each and every smartphone should be tossed into a lake or otherwise destroyed!
Not a bad idea, but let’s bring it down a level. There won’t be any need for parent-on-iPhone violence. With these tips and tactics, the youngsters attending the party won’t be worrying about any stupid screens. They will be too busy ripping and running while trying to capture the flag.
An obvious thing to do when planning a big outdoor party is to check the weather. Yes, you will be trusting known liars who get carried away on local TV stations with their fancy maps. But it’s good to have an idea of the temperatures and chances of rain. By the way, just because it may rain is no reason not to have the party. A little rain never hurt anyone and can even make playing the game more fun.
If we waited on predicted perfect weather days to do outdoor events, we would be stuck inside 90 percent of the time.
Figuring out where to have your epic Capture the Flag Redux party is as important as the weather check. If you’re inviting more than twenty kids then you want to have a big area to play the game. A local park is an option, as well as a state park which will have plenty of woods to enhance the game. Smaller groups can use a large backyard or the neighborhood playground. If you can swing it, try to pick a location with an amazing view. Somewhere with a waterfall or mountains in the background.
We won’t tell you who to invite to the party. But here is something to add to the invitations… some instructions for how to play Capture the Flag. The kids coming to the party don’t need an online course on how to play or have fun. But knowing the general idea of the game will get things moving faster. Parents can still tell everyone the rules before starting the party. The adults will appreciate not having to answer 20 questions since everyone has seen the rules and concepts before they arrived at the shindig.
As you can imagine some parents are picky about their kid’s clothes. After spending an arm and leg to buy the apparel, we can’t blame them. So it is wise to alert parents that Capture the Flag Redux will involve dirt, sweat, and even a stretched shirt or two. With this warning, no one will send their child to the party dressed like they’re going to a White House formal. And just like rain, a little dirt, sweat, and a twisted T-shirt never hurt anyone. Let’s toughen up our kids just in case life ever gets tough for them. Hint, it will.
As you plan your amazing Capture the Flag Redux party, you will have awesome snacks and a perfect cake lined up. But remember that this game does tire out the players. So be sure to have plenty of water or Gatorade on hand. It would be a shame to have players drop out of the fun because of cramps or heat exhaustion. We want the kids to be tough, but we know you’re not running a boot camp either.
Depending on how long the party is set to last, the teams will need mixing up now and then to keep it fresh for all the invitees. We can’t have one team dominating the contest for six hours if the party is an all-day affair. Parents can make sure the teams are evenly matched from the start or tweak the teams as the party goes on. It can get demoralizing if one team keeps winning easily.
Stick a competitive mom or dad on the team that is struggling if need be. That should fire up the underdogs… and tick off the team that is finding it too easy to win!
There are lots of ways to make parties for kids memorable. Taking the time to plan a Capture the Flag Redux party is a great step. It would be easy to let the kids mill around indoors and gobble down some cake and ice cream. They will love it, but it won’t stick in their minds as a top-5 party of their youth. What will make the top-5 list is a party where they ran wild and competed against their friends in a time-tested strategy game. Maybe they did it while getting soaked with rain. Or lost three pounds of water weight from sweaty fun.
It’s weird how the best memories involve getting a little dirty and doing something physical in a competition.
To learn the best Capture the Flag strategies for winning, download our FREE Capture the Flag Strategies eBook.
We at Starlux Games are proud to be a sponsor for Carolina For The Kids, a non-profit whose mission is to provide major emotional, medical, and financial support for the patients and families served by UNC Children’s Hospital.
As part of our sponsorship, we donated our glow in the dark game Capture the Flag REDUX and game accessories for their UNC Dance Marathon, which was held March 23-24.
Here’s what people at the event had to say about playing our Capture the Flag REDUX game:
“Walking out to the fields where Capture The Flag was setup was so cool. The second I saw it, I knew I wanted to play!” – Hunter M.
“It had been a long day, but playing Glow in the Dark Capture the Flag made me forget about it all!” – Jessica G.
“I grew up playing Capture the Flag in my neighbor’s yard, but Glow In The Dark Capture the Flag was a whole new spin.” – Anna E.
Below are some pictures from the event:
Most days it seems that kids’ main purpose in life is to have fun, and parents’ main purpose is to keep them active. The good news for both kids and parents is that fun and activity can go hand-in-hand and they don’t have to stop when the sun goes down. Glow in the dark games are a brilliant new way to extend a fun day and stay active into the night. Check out these top glow in the dark games for 2018.
1. Tangle NightBall Glow in the Dark Light Up LED Football: When you really want to have a ball, but it’s already dark out, you need the NightBall Football by Tangle Creations. The large size and matrix design of this ball make it easy for small hands to throw and catch. The LED motion activated technology makes it light up on impact and during movement, so you won’t loose track of it even in the dark. The more motion, the brighter it illuminates. Kick it off and light up the night. Available for purchase at amazon.
2. Glowing Treasure Hunt: Treasure is more fun to hunt when it’s dark out. Activate a bundle of glow sticks and hide them in the darkness for an exciting night of treasure hunting. When the hunt is over, award glow-in-the-dark prizes to the winner of each category such as the most glow sticks found, the most of one color found, the last glow stick found, or whatever categories that you determine. This glow game is fun for all ages and can even be played in teams of two or three.
3. Capture the Flag REDUX: It’s the classic Capture the Flag game revolutionized with futuristic glow-in-the-dark lights. Break friends out of jail, sneak into enemy territory, protect your base and steal the glowing flag to win. Each game box includes two glowing orbs to use as the “flags,” color-coded LED bracelets to differentiate team members, glowing jail markers, and a rule-book. As an extra bonus, each kit includes 12 game variation cards that provide you with new ways to play Capture the Flag, as well as other games. It’s a great way to bring people of all ages together – kids, teens, even normally boring adults.
4. Zombie Glow Stick Tag: Purchase red and green glow sticks for twice as many people as are playing and some glow stick connectors to make bracelets. Green glow sticks = healthy humans and red glow sticks = zombie infected humans. Pick one person to be the zombie and give them all of the red glow sticks. Everyone else uses a connector to form a green glow stick into a bracelet to put around his or her wrist. Then, the zombie closes his or her eyes and counts to 40 while the healthy humans run and hide. When the zombie opens his or her eyes, he or she goes to hunt for humans. Once they are caught, the zombie gives them a red glow stick and then they become zombies. The infected zombies keep chasing and giving red glow sticks to each human they catch. The game goes on until every human is caught.
5. Light Up LED Ring Toss Game – by GlowCity: This LED glow-in-the-dark ring toss game is right on target. The game set includes four fiber optic LED throwing rings (two red and two blue), along with two LED green target stakes. Once the 360 degree LED stakes are placed in the ground, they create an amazing glowing target that illuminates the ground around them. Great for parities and family get-togethers, this game is fun for all ages since you can determine the throwing distance. You can purchase this ring toss game at amazon.
6. Glow in the Dark Water Balloon Fight: What’s not to love when you combine water balloons and glow sticks for wet and wild glow games? Purchase a supply of mini glow sticks and some large water balloons. Then, activate the glow sticks and insert one into each balloon. Fill the balloons with water, tie and prepare for fun. Pick partners and throw them back and forth while trying not to drop them, or you can divide into teams and soak the opponents.
7. Moonlight Corn Hole: Keep the party going late into the night with light up options on a favorite outdoor beanbag game… Corn Hole. You can either make your own glowing boards, by adding LED strips or lights to your current Corn Hole game or you can purchase light kits at https://www.proglowsports.com/products/glow-hole-lights. These bright LED lights come in a variety of colors and are easy to install. This site also includes a variety of light-up corn hole beanbags to accompany your glowing boards.
8. Glow Obstacle Course: Create a glow-in-the-dark obstacle course with rope lights and neon-painted cones that all ages will love. Use your imagination to design a course that is exciting, as well as safe and challenging. You can add glow to just about anything in your course including hula-hoops, pool noodles and balls. Add some twists and turns to keep it fun and use a stopwatch to see how fast they can complete the course.
9. Glow Battle: Light up the night and face down your friends with this active game of light-up swords and thrilling strategy. Each kit comes with glowing regeneration station markers, blue and green glow wristbands and glowing batons of light for an epic nighttime of fun. Glow Battle’s game pieces are easy to set up and fun to use – but also require teamwork and strategy. Buy Glow Battle here.
10. Glow Bowling: Lawn bowling is even cooler when it’s played at night. Simply insert glow sticks into recycled water bottles or two-liter soda bottles to make pins. Then, create lanes out of long connected glow sticks or LED rope lights and set nine pins up at the end. Either use a bright colored ball or a ball painted with glow paint to knock the pins down.
Other Great Glow Games include:
• If you love music…Light Up Limbo… using a pole wrapped with battery powered lights.
• If you have a pool, here are some great glow in the dark swimming pool games.
• If you have a volleyball net…Glow Volleyball… add glow paint to your volleyball and rope lights or glow sticks to the edges of the net.
• If you love strategy…Tic Tac Glow… like Tic Tac Toe on the lawn but using two straight glow sticks to make the Xs and a connector to make the Os.
Here is one thing we really love about our glow in the dark game Capture the Flag REDUX… you mainly play it in the cool part of the day and not during the blazing hot sun hours. Understandably, it is difficult to get people motivated and outside when it’s a 100 degrees! So our Capture the Flag REDUX game already has some built in comfort to it: you’ll be sweaty because of running, not because of the sun.
BUT NOT EVERY EVENT TAKES PLACE AFTER THE SUN SETS!
Which is truly too bad. People should really consider us poor weaklings who burn within the first few minutes of sunlight. That being said, we understand that with school events, birthday parties, and youth events…they can’t always take place after dark. So how does one play capture the flag indoors? Here are our ideas of how to play capture the flag indoors:
1. Book a location
Find a gym, room, or space through a local group. Maybe it’s a school? Or maybe a community center? Church buildings also have great spaces to play sports. You can also look into renting out indoor soccer fields or sports complexes. For an event on the cheap, it’s usually best to book with a parks and rec center. They tend to have cheapest prices.
2. Measure the space
By this we don’t mean literally, unless that’s something you ARE very concerned with. Just make sure that you gauge that the room will have enough space to run. Even if the room looks big enough, remember that you need to set some “out of bounds” space aside so people running will have some safety space built in. Usually best not to have “walls” as the out of bounds.
If you are finding it hard to find a space that doesn’t have enough running room, consider some of our game variations. Some of the variations involve more strategy and hiding than actual running. Or maybe consider playing each game in slow motion, limit speed to speed-walking, or require players to waddle like penguins!
For our glow in the dark Capture the Flag REDUX game kit it is vital that you choose a dimly lit place—NOT COMPLETELY PITCH BLACK—to help enhance some of the glowing lights. Also, it’s the only way you’ll be able to see the glowing orbs and jail markers. If you book a place with windows, maybe bring along some parchment paper to temporarily block some of the light.
4. Get creative
How do you play Capture the Flag REDUX indoors without always making the orb so visible? If the orb can’t be hidden because of the space, maybe consider a game variation where one player is holding the orb, etc. Or some game variations don’t even need the orb! (For example, werewolves).
These are just a few examples of how to play Capture the Flag REDUX indoors. If you want more information on game variations, sign up for our newsletter where we send out free ones during certain months!