Over half of the nation’s parents have turned to search engines to seek guidance on key school subjects. Google data suggests that curriculum-related queries have increased by up to 398% since April 2019. This is a direct result of the pandemic having forced schools to close across the nation. Now parents are left frantically brushing up on ‘Fractions' or ‘Flags of the World’ in a bid to help tutor their children at home.
It comes as no surprise, then, that at the top of every parent’s wish list is access to reliable learning resources that kids want to do. An analysis of homeschooling during the coronavirus (published by the Office for National Statistics) found that 52% of parents have a child in their household who is struggling with home education, 77% of which is due to “lack of motivation”. This is where 8th generation Toymakers, Jaques of London, come in.
At the beginning of January, Jaques of London launched their new initiative for 2021, ‘Mini Minds Hub’—where education meets fun! Throughout the next six weeks of national lockdown, the company will release free resources to millions of parents who desperately need new ways to make learning fun. The Jaques’ resources have all been designed by UK Teachers and stand to be a saving grace for many UK households. As committed toymakers, their legacy has teaching, education, and Montessori play wrapped up in a neat bow.
Joe Jaques, Co-Owner of Jaques of London, said: “During these difficult times, we all need to do our bit to help each other. We aim to keep kids at the centre of everything we do, which is why we employ teachers to design our toys and why it seemed natural for us to now focus those efforts into making as many free educational resources as possible. For the past 225 years, our motto has been to ‘Teach the world to play’ and, given the current crisis, we now hope to ‘Teach the world to learn’ because learning should be fun first and foremost!”
Though many classrooms have taken up online lessons to bridge the learning gap until school resumes, many believe that online learning cannot facilitate education in the same way. One Primary School teacher said: “Teaching the children online is a real challenge because every child learns at their own pace. Online learning has obvious limitations, particularly for younger children, as some children need face-to-face interaction to give them confidence. That’s why we urge parents to continue the learning at home wherever possible.”
For parents who are searching for that helping hand, the Jaques’ Mini Minds Hub might be just the ticket. In one fell swoop, they have answered the call for credible, cost-free resources that keep children engaged and help to support all those hard-working Mum and Dad heroes. There is no sign-up or purchase required to grant you access—it has all been made available for anyone to enjoy. A quick browse on their website will show you a whole host of fun and informative worksheets that are printable at the click of a button—complete with low-colour versions to save parent’s pennies on printer ink! It is home learning made easy.
Joe Jaques went on to say: “As a Dad of two, I know too well how problematic it can be to keep kids interested in learning—especially with all the distractions we have at home. Our newly launched campaign is where education meets fun. Parents will find free activities for kids, a reward chart to track development, and a certificate of completion to celebrate their progress. It’s essentially a home-schooling survival kit to reward kids for their hard work and to applaud parents for doing such a great job at assuming this new parent-teacher role!”
As family figureheads up and down the country dust off their teaching caps and hero hats, in their corner is Jaques of London. With a band of UK Teachers behind them, Jaques of London aim to make a real difference in homes up and down the country by engaging children with the joys of learning and supporting parents during this historic time.
Jaques of London
Jaques of London is the oldest toys & games company in the world. Passed down from Father to Son for 8 generations, Jaques is still in the family after 225 years. This family-run business has been responsible for inventing many well-known games, such as Croquet, Ping Pong, Snakes and Ladders, Ludo, Tiddledywinks, The Staunton Chess Set, Happy Families, Snap and many more.