The friendly local games store is a great place to buy new games and accessories, but it also much more than that. It is a place where you can build new friendships and get great advice and ideas that could lead you to your next awesome gaming experience.
Maybe you get your games through Amazon or a big box store like Target or Walmart. This could be because you have a limited budget, or there just isn’t an independent game store near you. I get it. But if you can afford to support a small, independent business, try to find one near you. Especially now, with the pandemic situation, they need your help to survive far more than Jeff Bezos or any of the large corporate stores.
With that in mind, we will be presenting spotlights on some small independent stores that we like! This means that they are all in Ontario, but they do also have online stores and can ship to you!
This series of blogs does not represent a ranked “Top” list, and the stores are presented in no particular order.
Learning Tree is an educational store in Burlington, Ontario. It supplies everything people might need if they are teaching young people practical skills. It is a great place for teachers to pick up all sorts of items for their classroom, from posters, anchor charts, and wall decorations to sets of manipulatives and activities for students to do in the classroom.
It’s also a great place for parents to get supplementary material to help their children at home, such as workbooks, and of course, games.
Don’t write off “educational” stores as just a place for teaches to get classroom decorations, since many, and especially Learning Tree, have a great selection of games for home and at school that children and adults will enjoy playing together, all the while practicing literacy and math skills, along with strategy and planning. And if you want to have some creative time, there is also a large selection of art and craft supplies.
The ladies who run the store are education professionals, and know all of the games and their benefits. They have some open copies set out on tables for you to look at and try, so you know what you’re getting.
And if all that weren’t cool enough in a store, they also run PD Day and March Break learning camps, host birthday parties, and run special event nights at local schools to get families involved in STEM and Literacy learning together! Joni and Amy are dedicated to making sure that every child has access to what they need to learn.
Of course, this year, September’s going to look a bit different. There is still uncertainty about how the school year will look and who will actually be going into a classroom. If you need to keep your children home for school for health reasons, and need materials to supplement their learning, look to Learning Tree before you try the big online retailer. Joni and Amy have put so much into helping young people learn, let’s support them back so they can continue to do so in the future.