How to find online games, which are worth your time and money? We created the simple step by step guide about how to search and choose baby computer games online. Just go through all below points and create your own action plan starting from getting the overview of main baby games online to analyzing your kids’ needs to finding a proper balance between different children’s activities.
1. Get the big picture of all free online games and paid interactive games for babies
Are you looking for really cute baby games online? Are you typing into a search engine several different phrases trying to find something that is appropriate for your small one? There is a plenty of different free and paid games and other online activities for toddlers.
Our advice is to use a structured approach in order to simplify the whole process of choosing best of the best for your small beloved kid! Save your time and read our simple guide: Games for Toddlers – Getting Started to get a big picture of games for toddlers landscape, and then just follow the simple steps indicated below.
We would like you to remember that there are many other options than just online games for kids to be chosen from, if you want to support the development of your child and engage him/her in a clever way. Check other sections of this website about painting games and cooking games for toddlers.
2. Determine your child’s needs
Take into account the following 5 main factors:
• Age: infant, toddler, pre-schooler, older kid?
• Time to be spent: short 10 – 15 min games or the ones requiring longer concentration on the activity?
• Talent/skills to be developed: painting, shape or numbers recognition, reading, social skills, manual skills, creativity, imagination?
• Number of players: can your child play independently or does he/she need your support?
• Can the whole family be involved? Does the game enhance interaction with other people?
• Safety: is this online game appropriate for the age? Make sure that the game is not violent. BE CAREFUL with websites which contain pornography related pictures or links which potentially can redirect your child to porn websites.
3. Analyse reviews and parenting forums
It seems to be time consuming but it is not! Just google it! There are hundreds parenting websites and forums which can be trusted. All parents want all the best for their kids and they would not recommend to other parents online games for baby that are not appropriate or can be even dangerous for emotional development of your kid.
However, be careful and just do not type into Google the most popular phrases such as “online baby games free” or “online free baby games” as you are going to be overloaded by dozens of not very useful pieces of information and some websites with “messy” content – just simply aggregating different games for toddlers that are not necessarily worth even checking.
We recommend to check out Metacritic website for finding some reliable reviews.
Have a look at some research and download a free report: Children, Teens, Media, and Body Image to broaden your knowledge on potential media impact on your child.
4. Search for the best online games for your baby
Prepare a short list of games which are the most interesting, engaging, and have great reviews. At this stage you can also create a simple matrix with all above-mentioned factors which you can use on the later stage of choosing the best game online for your kid. Use this tool always when you are searching on the Internet or planning to invest money in some product for your baby.
5. Match the best online games you have found with your child’s needs
Simply use your matrix and match a short list of games you have chosen with all factors you should take into account (see: Step 2).
Choose the best match. Still not satisfied? Repeat the previous stage in order to create customised search and find valuable opinions of other users. Always check customers’ reviews on trusted websites such as amazon.com or some parenting websites.
6. Find balance between online games for baby and other activities
Did you find the best online game for your kid? That is not the end of the whole process, which all good parents should follow. There are two additional steps: this one is about the importance of finding the proper balance between different activities in which your kid is involved.
Always combine online and other computer based games with different outdoor and indoor activities. Remember to check all options: there are great free resources online (check our guide) and also interesting relatively cheap applications or games and toys accessible.
Spend time with your toddler while singing action songs and using “fingerplays”. Find some interesting and unique activity for your older kids, such as creating figures from string. Engage the whole family in funny and learning board games or play together Xbox games for toddlers.
Get inspired and check out also our section about travel games, painting games, and cooking games and How to improve social skills of your baby? Most engaging baby games for girls and boys.
7. Track time spent on playing online games
We strongly advise you to create a simple system of tracking time spent on playing online games for baby. Observe your children and keep track of how much time they spend on the computer or iPad etc. Set priorities list and discuss it with a child. Of course you are responsible for setting all limits of your young one but try to explain every time the importance of finding balance between learning and fun games, and playing and other children’s activities such as homework, hobbies, sport training, meeting friends etc.
You can use simple visual solution such as Time Management Wheel (simply draw a circle on a piece of paper) which can be coloured by your small ones using pre-defined colours. Divide it into 5 parts (toddlers and pre-schoolers) or 7-10 parts (older kids depending on the number of different interests). Let’s assume that a pink colour symbolizes time spent on playing fun games. Ask your child to colour this part of the wheel and make sure that a child fully understands the meaning of it.
Try to subdivide a game part into smaller parts and teach your young one some basics of time management. Your kids should understand that when the whole game part is almost pink they should make a decision: should I play now? Should I wait a little bit and play later? Always try to choose learning games instead of games which are purely for fun such as baby Barbie games online.
Everything depends on your creativity – just create an agreement with your kids and be CONSEQUENT!