In our @HomeCrazzyHome, I am the only one that is NOT a gamer.
If @PanKwake is up, she is either watching YouTube or downstairs in the computer room, gaming. Even Alan stays up until 2 or 3 in the morning, you guessed it, gaming. And even though I don’t game, I spend almost half my day online, usually writing.
I have more than one #homeed friend who asks…Aren’t you worried? She never gets out in the sunshine.
To reassure you, it is not that extreme. @PanKwake does get out of the house, though not in almost a year, but that is because of the pandemic. It is just that, in order to get her out, it needs to be worth it. Something special. Such as…
Otherwise, yes, she’s gaming. She has been playing games on her dad’s iPad for as long as I can remember. In fact, he passed his old one on to her. She has hundreds, yes, hundreds, of games downloaded on her three iPads. Yes, three of them. One very old one – that has never been updated to IOS-11 or beyond because some of her games would stop working. Another oldish one for when we go out. I dropped and cracked it in the corner. Which is why we got her another one. But she will not get rid of the old one.
She was barely five when she discovered Minecraft on her iPad. It took her a while to adapt to playing the computer version of it. She first was exposed on that version when we dressed up and went to ComicCon in London. Yes, it ended in a meltdown. But I had on my WonderWoman knickers, and the rest of the costume, too. I am eternally grateful to the patient #neurodivergent woman who sat at the computer terminal next to @PanKwake that day. I know that all her questions were stressing the woman out, but she was so kind to answer them anyway. And create a Minecraft demon.
And of course, she loves playing Roblox games, too. Which ones tend to vary over time. Many of those games she discovers on YouTube. Her favorite right now is Bee Swarm Simulator…
It is that game which helped me to realize the value in all that gaming.
Obviously, I am not the type to drill times tables into her mind – just because it is part of the curriculum. If @PanKwake needs to do math, she’ll ask Google. For me, the important thing is helping her to know the right question to ask. Is it addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division? And she’s getting pretty good at that now.
What she was struggling with was place value. She knew that 8 was greater than 2. And that 50 was more than 20. But anything beyond 100 just seemed to be too complex. Unless it was her Robux. She kept good track of those. She could even tell me how many she needed me to buy her in order to purchase something she wanted. So, we were making progress into the hundreds and thousands.
But when it came to larger numbers? Tens of thousands, millions? Nope. Honestly, that concept isn’t easy for many people, especially those like me who struggled all my life to make ends meet. When I found out the number of zeros in Alan’s bank account, I was… Well, if you can’t tell, it still boggles my mind. But the truth is…millionaires are just middle class these days. Upper middle sure, but certainly not ‘rich.’ Heck, even trashy romances are no longer written about them.
How though was I going to teach @PanKwake about such a complex theory?
Bee Swarm, of course.
As @PanKwake progressed in the game, things got harder…and more expensive. First millions. Then I noticed BILLIONS. Suddenly those numbers meant something to her. Billions meant she had to work longer and harder to collect that much pollen. A video game, a free one, had taught her what I could not. And she had learned it on her own. Through real life experiences…well, cyber life anyway.
That’s when I began to chillax. Between the YouTube drama and that lesson, I began to realize…with a tiny bit of guidance…@PanKwake was perfectly capable of learning what she wanted, when she needed, and in the way that made sense for her.
Now, well, there’s still a bit for me to do… But that’s for tomorrow….