But time away from the classroom, virtual or otherwise, doesn’t mean the holidays can’t still be a time of learning, even with a hobby children already enjoy.
Summer is almost here! But with the sunny days and warm weather comes another concern for parents in an already challenging year: How their school-age children will be spending their summer days.
For many, that hobby is video games. And while games have been studied for their benefits in critical thinking, problem-solving and reaction times, one advantage is often overlooked – games’ ability to spark an interest in history.
“When game creators have the right intentions in mind, they can create something that is both engaging and educational for kids,” said James Hornfischer, naval historian and author. “Even if it doesn’t give them a full history lesson, getting them engaged in the action can open up their curiosity and get them to ask questions, which is important for a successful education.”
Of course, selecting the right game is crucial and depends on the age of a child and the themes parents are willing to expose them to.
World of Warships
World of Warships is an online naval combat game set in the first half of the 20th century that lets you battle with – you guessed it – historically accurate warships.
Players can choose and customize their vessels in a port and strategize to win against the opposing team. Since its official launch in September 2015, World of Warships has added over 400 historical vessels, including the iconic warships that wrote history during World War II such as:
• U.S. aircraft carrier, USS Enterprise • German battleship, Bismarck
• Japanese battleship, Yamato • UK battleship, HMS Warspite
Besides the ships, the game features notable historical harbors and port cities meticulously recreated to the smallest details. The game also awards players for their achievements through historical Collections, bringing the story about different time periods, technological achievements and famous commanders closer to players. The game’s creators are dedicated to fans’ love of naval history, and regularly release educational resources including the “Naval Legends” YouTube series, which visits and explores the history of the real-world retired warships. This enables players to develop deep appreciation for the naval heritage. As a result, World of Warships organized a couple of successful charity fundraisers that saw players raising money to save USS Texas and USS Batfish ship museums from decay.
On May 18, World of Warships is livestreaming its own “Night at the Museum,” which will have a live tour of 15 naval museums around the globe. It begins very early to accommodate time zones around the globe – 3:40 a.m. EDT to 9 p.m. EDT with the U.S. museums starting at 10:45 a.m. EDT. There will be fun contests and prizes given away throughout the stream and tons of interesting information about some of the most highly regarded naval ships in the world. You can watch on YouTube and Twitch channels and on Steam. World of Warships is free to play on PC and World of Warships: Legends is available on Xbox, Xbox Series X, PS4 and PS5.
Valiant Hearts: The Great War Released in 2014, Valiant Hearts: The Great War is one of the few games to tackle World War I and does so with nuance and an emotional depth uncommon to the genre.
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