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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions (expandable/collapsable sections)

How did RetroSparX get started?

Through contact with many of our beloved elderly friends and relatives, we at RetroSparX came to understand how the many outstanding events and personalities of the recent past have left an impact upon an entire generation of today’s seniors. We believe that further exploring that recent past is not only fun and beneficial for seniors, but is also enriching for the broader community surrounding seniors, be they friends, family or other caregivers. With our concise, topical narratives, we seek to remind seniors of some of these extraordinary events, and to consolidate those memories through memory games for seniors that are engaging and fun.

What is a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit?

A RetroSparX Memory Game Unit is a single module designed to stimulate memories. It consists of a brief narrative describing an event, a person or an achievement from recent history, and two original, creative memory games for seniors that are related to the topic explored in the narrative. As a whole, a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit encourages a user to revisit the moment in time described by the narrative and then to draw on personal experience and memories to complete the games and activities. The Units are not intended as a test, but rather as a fun and informal way to stimulate reminiscence and, where the Unit is done in a collaborative setting, to invite discussion and social interaction.

Where can I find RetroSparX Memory Game Units?

You can browse our store, which is called Shop RetroSparX. At the top of the Shop RetroSparX page are filters which will direct you to our seven categories of units (Significant Events in History, Sports, Entertainment, Cultural Trends, Science and Technology, Our Best Sellers and Recently Added), or to our many categories of memory games for seniors. Additionally, you can use the search box to look for a particular topic.

What is in a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit?

By clicking on a product listed in Shop RetroSparX, you will be automatically redirected to a page that provides details of that particular product. Those details include a summary of all narrative portions of the Unit, a brief description of the included memory games for seniors, and other relevant information such as the difficulty of the memory games, the suitability of the Unit for seniors who may have dementia (or some cognitive impairment) and the estimated completion time of the Unit and its memory games. Because we have many different types of memory games for seniors (and are continually striving to create more), we provide a link to a sample of each game type included in the Unit.

Should I play a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit on my own or with others?

There is no definitive answer to this question. We appreciate that our customers will approach our product with their own unique personalities. Some may prefer to tackle a Memory Game Unit on their own, and may embrace the challenge of singlehandedly completing the included memory games for seniors. However, for those who are inclined, we see great potential benefit in experiencing a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit with others. We would hope that reading the narrative portion together would stimulate an exchange of ideas and impressions of the narrative. Our memory games for seniors are fun and engaging, and can easily be completed in a collaborative context. When you share your memories with others and learn from their personal experiences, you are enriching your connection with them. We also would recommend doing a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit with family members, and affording them a window into your personal history.

Can seniors and caregivers play a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit together?

Absolutely! Doing a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit with a trusted caregiver is not only fun, but also a wonderful way to build your relationship by introducing a deeper, more personal dimension. Because our narratives and activities are designed to bring back memories and stimulate conversation, completing a RetroSparX Unit together will provide both the senior and the caregiver with a glimpse into the other’s background and experiences.

What is the science or methodology behind a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit?

The purpose of a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit is to promote the recall of personal memories in a fun, creative, and potentially collaborative context. Many research and clinical studies have established the importance of social connection and intellectual engagement in combatting cognitive decline and promoting overall health and social well-being. Furthermore, research suggests that these benefits may be greater when social connections are formed in the context of a group relationship, as opposed to a one-on-one relationship.

As well, there is a growing body of research that is establishing the role that reminiscing has in enhancing the emotional and cognitive well-being of seniors. Revisiting one’s personal history serves not only as a reminder of the richness of one’s life, but also is a way to build stronger connections with the present. Reminiscing with a loved one or a caregiver, or in the context of a group, can also strengthen the social and emotional bonds between all participants.

How do I know if my answers to the games and activities in a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit are correct?

Each RetroSparX Memory Game Unit comes with an answer key. You can use it to check your answers, or to consult if you are momentarily stumped.

What is the difference between individual customers and those who purchase a Memory Game Unit on behalf of a seniors' residence or organization?

In addition to providing individuals with a tool to revisit events from their own personal history, we have seen that RetroSparX is an effective and creative way to elicit discussion and cognitive engagement in the context of a seniors’ organization or community program. When you register to become a member of the RetroSparX community and when you purchase a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit, we ask that you indicate whether you are interested in RetroSparX as an ‘individual’ for your own personal use (including working with a caregiver, or small gathering of family or friends), or for use in an ‘organization,’ which includes a retirement facility, nursing home, assisted living facility, residential care home, rehabilitation facility, hospital or community health care institution, home care organization, community centre or other health, support or recreational organization for seniors. Depending upon whether you are purchasing as an individual or an organization, you will have to a agree to a Terms of Use agreement that will set out the manner(s) in which you will be authorized to use our Memory Game Units.

If you purchase a Memory Game Unit for use in a senior’s organization or community program (i.e. as an organization), you will be permitted to use the Unit and the included memory games for seniors in a greater number of contexts. For instance, you can use the Memory Game Unit as the basis of an organized group activity session, or distribute the Unit to individuals or to small groups of residents or members to complete. As well, you can use the RetroSparX Memory Game Unit you have purchased in these contexts as many times as you like. For these reasons, the price per Unit will be higher.

How will I receive a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit after I have paid for it?

Your RetroSparX Memory Game Unit will be available to you as a pdf document that you can download to and print from your computer. You can download the pdf copy of the Memory Game Unit directly from the receipt that is generated once your order and payment are approved. We will also email a pdf copy of the Memory Game Unit you have purchased to the email address that is associated with your account. The email should arrive within minutes of your purchase transaction. If you do not receive the Memory Game Unit within 1 hour after you have purchased it, please check your junk mail folder to see if the email is there. If it is not, please contact us immediately.

We strongly recommend that you print the RetroSparX Memory Game Unit to complete the games and activities, as you will want to flip back and forth between the pages as you go and write your answers down.

What if I have trouble downloading the pdf of the RetroSparX Memory Game Unit?

Occasionally you might encounter technical issues relating to downloading pdf documents. These issues typically relate to your computer device and/or operating software. Please make sure that you have installed, on your computer, the current version of software that is recommended for downloading and reading pdfs.

What if I do not have a printer to print off the RetroSparX Memory Game Unit I have purchased?

If you do not have easy access to a printer, we recommend that you forward the email with the downloadable Memory Game Unit to a friend, relative or neighbour who does have a printer. That person is authorized to print the Memory Game Unit solely and exclusively for your use.

Can I suggest a topic for a RetroSparX Memory Game unit?

Absolutely! We would love to hear your ideas for future Memory Game Units. For that matter, we welcome any input regarding any of the Units we offer. Just send us a note by clicking on the Contact button at the top of the page.

How will I know when new Memory Game Units are added to RetroSparX?

We aim to add new content to our website continually, so we urge you to visit us often to see what we have to offer. We will also be sending by email a copy of our blog called NewSparX to our customers monthly which will, among other things, introduce the Memory Game Units that have been recently added. You will automatically receive a copy of NewSparX once you sign up. And, because we don’t want to pester you with emails, you will always have the option to unsubscribe from our blog. We hope you won’t though! We’d love to stay in touch.

Can I make copies of a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit?

If you purchase a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit for your own personal use, you can make no more than two (2) copies of the Unit, and those two copies can only be used by those persons, if any, who are joining you to complete the Unit. We recognize that it may be difficult for a group to read off only one printed copy of a Memory Game Unit or to work off of a single copy of the included memory games for seniors, so we allow these two extra copies to be made to facilitate your enjoyment of RetroSparX. However, in no circumstances can you make a copy of a Memory Game Unit to give to another person who intends to complete the Unit either individually or at another time. As well, you cannot forward to another person the email to which a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit is attached, and cannot share your account log-in information with anyone. That other person is welcome (and should be encouraged!) to visit our site and purchase Memory Game Units for their own enjoyment. Please refer to our Terms of Use for more information.

 

If you purchase a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit on behalf of a seniors’ organization or community program, you can make as many copies of the purchased Unit as are necessary to distribute to those expected to engage in the Unit. While you undoubtedly will know the preferences of your residents or members, we at RetroSparX have found that sharing a Memory Game Unit among a few people (whether as part of an organized activity session or otherwise) so that they collaborate together to solve the memory games and activities is the best way to promote conversation and social connection. Unless otherwise agreed to by RetroSparX, the Memory Game Unit you purchase can only be used within a single facility, and under no circumstances can you forward a RetroSparX Memory Game Unit to another facility, whether related or otherwise. Please refer to our Terms of Use for more information.

What if I have difficulty processing my order, or if I have a question that you have not answered above?

We welcome you to contact us by sending us a note using our Contact page. We endeavour to answer all questions as quickly as possible.