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Ask HN: Best old video games to teach 5yr old how to read ?
1 point by IG_Semmelweiss 51 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 4 comments
Hello HN ! I want to leverage old RPG games to teach spanish or french reading to kids (native speakers).

We plan to use PC (vs app) as translations of games are easier to find, there's a larger library, and the PC is easy to contain (no wifi, no dark patterns etc).

We started with Final Fantasy I (NES), but stopped once we realized its not text heavy - its mostly a grind.

So, I wanted to ask HN, which fun (and preferably, old) games you played with tons of text that was suitable for very young (4-7yr old) kids ?

There's some classic games you can install in a Linux shell, like Wumpus, and Go Fish. The ancient '70s version of Star Trek? Collossal Cave adventure? (Asking myself if Nethack is age appropriate...)

You might check out the Interactive Fiction Database at ifdb.org. It's got an entry for over 11,000 text adventures that have been written over the decades, so surely some of them must be age-appropriate.

Also, here's a discussion about text adventures that were specifically written in French.


Are you sure that video games are more helpful in teaching 5-year-olds how to read than books which can be read to the children or which they can read themselves?

That would be better.

Unfortunately a working adult only has X amount of time in a given day to dedicate to kids. Once that time is over, its really up to them. I dont see how reading for 30mins (which we already do) becomes proficiency, unless they do self study reinforcement, and that wont happen unless learning is fused with other activities they love.

The one thing kids have in abundance of, is curiosity and spare time. It would be great to redirect those to their benefit.

Zork! ha.

Maybe go PC-retro and try the old Sierra adventure games? Teach reading AND typing!

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