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Although bingo has always been associated with a pensioners option of gambling, it is increasingly being used for various other applications. Previously used in churches, “Sunday Bingo” was a popular event where the entire congregation would play after mass, and the proceeds would be given either to the development of the church, an ailing member of the congregation or some other charitable cause.

The application of bingo for education is newer and not explored as much. Instead of the traditional squares which contain numbers, various other topics may be included. This includes the names of presidents, monarchs, towns, etc. and through a fun game of bingo, students are taught new concepts. The use of play in academics in increasing, and psychologists have time and again stressed upon the vast benefits of interactive education.

An example of this is the attempt of a mother to teach her son the names of all the American states using bingo. In place of the numbers, she printed a bingo card that bares the names and shapes of each state, and using her call card would make him identify and strike off the names. As he created a pattern, and then full house shouting “Bingo!” he also learnt the various states. This is an innovate method to teach young children lists and names. While rote learning may be possible for a short duration, in order to supply and store this information into the long term memory of a child, more interactive methods must be employed.

More and more in the world of medicine and mental health, there is a concensus that innovative teaching methods are required.  Students increasingly burdened with larger amounts of information are reaching a point of breakdown.  The attention span of students is reducing while their subject depth required per field is always rising. To combat this, the applications of bingo in education have been undergoing tests.

It has been found that the usage of image as well as word stimuli in the card boosts the retention capacity of the children playing the game.

When questioned, children who learnt the names of states through bingo cards had a markedly higher ability to recall as compared to the children who learnt through memorization. The results stunned the researchers, who found that this ability to retain was also long term, as the results were concurrent even after a week had elapsed. Thus, it is imperative that the avenues of using bingo to educate is explored. The idea that bingo is purely a game of  gambling and luck must change with changing times, just as traditional bingo played in bingo halls has now moved to the far more interactive online bingo games form.