Poké­mon Go is the bane of ev­ery par­ent’s life. Or is it? It’s just pos­si­ble that your child’s ob­ses­sion with the lit­tle car­toon crea­tures could have an up­side.

Five Star Kids - - POKÉMON - Words Hi­lary Dol­ing

Ev­ery par­ent worries about Poké­mon Go. The in­flu­ence of one lit­tle app on the brains and imag­i­na­tions of our chil­dren and, let’s face it, a grow­ing num­ber of adults – even par­ents (shock, hor­ror) – has been phe­nom­e­nal.

You’d have to be liv­ing on a desert is­land not to have heard of Poké­mon. In fact, not even a desert is­land can save you be­cause Poké­mon Go now reaches the fur­thest cor­ners of the globe.

And this is where the ed­u­ca­tion part comes in. The lo­ca­tion-based game al­lows play­ers to ‘col­lect’ Poké­mon mon­sters on their phone, us­ing an app that lets them know if the vir­tual- re­al­ity crea­tures are lurk­ing in real-life lo­ca­tions close by. One smart ge­og­ra­phy teacher at my son’s school is ac­tu­ally us­ing Poké­mon Go to in­crease stu­dents’ knowl­edge of the world. “Talk­ing about the game gets their at­ten­tion,” she says. “It helps keep them in­ter­ested as they learn about na­tional mon­u­ments and land­marks where car­toon char­ac­ters might be hid­ing.”

The coun­tries where you can now play in­clude: the United States, Canada, Bri­tain, Ger­many, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Aus­tria, Bel­gium, Croa­tia, Cyprus, Czech Repub­lic, Den­mark, Es­to­nia, Fin­land, Greece, Green­land, Hun­gary, Ice­land, Ire­land, Latvia, Lithua­nia, Lux­em­bourg, Malta, Nether­lands, Nor­way, Ro­ma­nia, Slo­vakia, Slove­nia, Swe­den, Switzer­land, Peru and, of course, Aus­tralia. With more coun­tries com­ing on­line all the time, the fam­ily travel and ed­u­ca­tional op­por­tu­ni­ties start to be­come ob­vi­ous.

Jane San­ders took her chil­dren to Europe dur­ing the last school hol­i­days. “We found that our two chil­dren [12 and 7] not only had some­thing in com­mon they were will­ing to do to­gether, but were ea­ger to go to

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