Hey Poptropicans—this is a guest post by Leona Henryson, a mother and educator who, along with her son, enjoys Poptropica and its fan community. From the perspective of one parent, here’s why Poptropica is great for kids!
Games have exploded across the years and are now found everywhere – on our phones, computers and the internet. The good news is that they’ve been coopted into doing more than just entertaining. They now educate in equal measures. This means they are useful for children and adults to learn everything from languages to math.
An example which nicely straddles the border between entertainment and education is the game Poptropica. This game, specifically designed for children and offers them an environment that is safe, even while allowing them to interact with millions of other children. They hone their puzzle-solving skills and collect points with which they can upgrade the appearance of their character. All while being kept safe and secure.
So what are the big advantages of the game?
#1: It’s hugely entertaining
There really is no getting around it. This game is hugely entertaining. There are so many different games that go in so many different directions that children will be sure to find something they’ll enjoy doing.
In fact, so many people have such good memories of the game growing up that they’ll return to it when they’re older just to go on a trip down memory lane.
Heck, even parents sometimes get sucked into the platform themselves, due to its entertaining puzzles, its whimsical characters and its funny ideas. That means that this offers a great opportunity to play games together.
And naturally, it’s hugely important that the game actually entertains children. After all, whatever other educational or social advantages the game has, if children don’t actually want to go on there to play, then it won’t be much use, will it?
#2: It performs as a gateway
In today’s environment it is important we all learn computer literacy, as a lot of the jobs that are going to be created in the next decades are going to depend on how well we can interact with computers. At the same time, we don’t want to just thrust our children into the world wild web, with its trolls, stalkers and adult topics.
That’s where platforms like Poptropica come in. They teach the former, while making sure the latter problems can’t intrude. In this way, it forms a great way for your children to start learning how to use the internet. They’ll come to learn a great deal of the basic ideas that govern how we interact with virtual environments and begin to understand the underlying ideas.
#3: Safe interaction
Another nice advantage is that the game has been constructed in such a way that children can interact and play games together, without inviting the problems normally associated with that kind of thing. On the different islands in the game, children can play games against other players and even communicate with them – albeit through a limited repertoire of dialogue options.
This means that children get to enjoy one of the most exciting aspects of the online word – namely being together with millions of other children who are sharing the same experiences – while not running any risk.
#4: It’s great to do together
The game can be at its most rewarding if actually done together with your child – particularly if they’re still young. That’s because some of the puzzles can be a bit challenging. Another thing to note is that though their English does not have to be flawless, they do need pretty decent reading skills to understand the nature of some of the puzzles.
This could be seen as a drawback, but you can also turn this into a learning opportunity. For example, by helping your kid find the islands they enjoy the most and the topics that most excite them, you’re going to be able to get an idea of what they actually enjoy. This you can then explore further offline, for example. Or you can use it as a way to find interesting topics that you wish to broach.
In this way, the game can become a fantastic educational tool as well, as it opens up roadways and paths for you to find topics your kids find exciting.
#5: It’s worth your time
If you’re looking for a safe and fun way for your children to spend time online, then you have to check out Poptropica. It’s a highly enjoyable environment that you and your kids will love to explore and learn about.
This can be done for free. Alternatively, you can pay for a month of access for $3 US – which really isn’t going to break the bank – in order to get full member access. This opens up some more islands, gives them early access to the new islands being designed, and gives kids full access to the store where they can design the look of their character.
Whatever way you choose, you’re not going to be disappointed by Poptropica.
Hope you enjoyed this guest post by Leona Henryson! For another perspective that offers 5 more reasons Poptropica is great for kids, check out this post with thoughts from a former Poptropica Creator, James Lema (Director D).
The Poptropica Help Blog welcomes interesting Poptropica insights from anyone in the Poptropica community with thoughts to share. You can find some tips and guidelines on our Write for the PHB page. We also encourage sharing blog posts on the PHC.
If you have an idea for a PHB post, we’d love to hear it!