Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this educational game asks players to do math problems, read out loud, count syllables in passages, and memorize numbers and their location on the screen. Since math calculations are tested, kids need to know their multiplication and division facts before playing. Some of the mental games rely on voice and handwriting recognition technology, which don't always work correctly. This software appeals to both kids and adults, making it a fun way for families to play together.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- following directions
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- identifying strengths and weaknesses
- work to achieve goals
Engagement, Approach, Support
Brain Age provides a fun way for families to play together. The mental workouts take just a few minutes a day and the Sudoku puzzles provide extra motivation to play, but the voice and handwriting recognition doesn't always work.
Kids can learn about math and reading in this highly accessible game. None of the tests are particularly hard, but players need to work quickly in order to score well. The software rewards each day's playing with a sticker on a calendar.
The game keeps score of each mini-game and uses that data to show players whether their "brain age" is improving. The software keeps track of whether players play every day and slowly reveals its content over days of playing.
What's it about?
BRAIN AGE challenges players with a variety of Mini games that provide a mental workout. Some of the activities include doing math problems, reading out loud, counting syllables in passages, and memorizing numbers and their location on the screen. The game keeps score of each Mini game and uses that data to show players whether their \"brain age\" is improving. The software keeps track of whether players play every day, slowly reveals its content over days of playing, and rewards each day's playing with a sticker on a calendar.
Is it any good?
Family members, or up to 16 friends, can wirelessly compete in a game of 30 math calculations to see who can solve them the fastest. This competition requires additional Nintendo DS units but only one software cartridge. Players write their answers on the DS's touch screen. Our testers found that the handwriting recognition software was good but not great.
Brain Age makes mental workouts easy because it takes just a few minutes a day. And having Sudoku puzzles to play during down times is extra motivation to stick your Nintendo DS into your backpack, purse, or briefcase every day. Overall, this software appeals to both kids and adults, making it a fun way for families to play together.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about whether playing mental games makes your brain smarter. Are you learning to use your mind better or simply mastering the games presented?
Also, families may want to discuss Professor Kawashima's theory that doing short mental exercises every day keeps brains sharp. Is this game something you need to do every day?