With Belgian schools still closed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, parents have no choice but to turn to home education. To make these challenging times a little more bearable a lot of local developers have made (parts of) their educational games and applications free for a limited amount of time.
Ever since schools shut down, our member Cartamundi Digital has been offering some of their Fundels (link in Dutch) for free. The interactive storybooks are a hit with the youngest crowd and their parents, who are able to get a break while their little one listens to a story, plays a game or solves a jigsaw puzzle.
With Het Dorp van Mol en Beer (link in Dutch) kids who are learning Dutch can keep practising at home. The tool was developed by our member Die Keure and offers fun minigames aimed at improving (comprehensive) reading, spelling, vocabulary, and grammar. They also have a free tablet app Luna (link in Dutch), which lets kids practice writing (capital) letters and numbers.
In the math and science department, you can sign up for a new closed beta of programming platform ViKiD by our member Strongly Typed Solutions or check out the educational recycling game CosmiClean created by the lovely people at LuGus Studios. Previousy encouraging Liftoff players to stay at home with in-game messages, the team says it has shifted development priorities to projects that can make a difference, such as educational games for home education, VR games to encourage in-house sports activities, and even simulator software to help fight the pandemic.
Additionally, Karaton (link in Dutch) is offering a 35% discount with promocode KARATON2020 and iDROPS has made their game Peacecraft, a serious game that puts you in the shoes of a refugee from the Middle-East, available for free.
Spent enough time learning? Take your kids outside and go bear hunting in your neighbourhood! Lots of people have placed a stuffed animal in the window for you to spot. While that’s good fun in and of itself, you can now tag the bears you’ve found and start a whole collection on this website (link in Dutch). This cool idea was thought up by Boa Bonanza developer Karel Crombecq and illustrator Stephanie Dehennin.
Last but not least: Assassin’s Creed is a huge international production, but now it has a neat local twist. Ubisoft Belgium has collaborated with a local teacher to create a Dutch educational package in Assasin’s Creed: Odyssey’s Discovery Tour. Interested (home) teachers can reach out to Ubisoft for the download files.
It’s great to see everyone puling their weight as much as possible to make the most out of a difficult situation. If we somehow missed your initiative (we’re only human), or this has inspired you to set something up, please let us know!