As the number of play spaces dwindles in our increasingly connected world, there’s a growing need to keep kids entertained with as many avenues as possible. Games help bridge that gap until more space is created for them. Whether you have a child yourself or are simply looking to introduce your family to games, playing board games with kids is a great way to do so. Kids will be intrigued by the newness of the experience and feel included because they can instantly become a part of the game. Here’s how playing classic board games with your kids can be beneficial:
Why Play Classic Board Games With Your Kids?
Kids are curious by nature, and they’re likely to be more interested in a new activity if they know the benefits. Playing board games with your kids can help your family increase brain power, have fun together and teach them valuable life skills. Here are some of the benefits you can reap by playing board games with your kids:
- Board games are a great way to get kids thinking more about their feelings and how those feelings affect their actions. This can teach kids how to manage their emotions in healthier ways.
- Playing board games with your kids can help them learn how to communicate with others. They’ll learn to think before they speak and to be more mindful of the tone and words they choose.
- Having fun while learning can help kids develop a lifelong curiosity about the world around them. Playing board games with your kids can give them the opportunity to investigate the universe alongside their friends.
- Playing board games with your kids can help them build crucial life skills, like how to clean up after themselves and how to follow directions.
- If you don’t have the time to sit and play with your kids, playing board games with them can be a great substitute. You can take turns setting up the game, teaching rules and encouraging teamwork.
How to Play Classic Board Games With Your Kids
Kids are curious by nature and are intrigued by the newness of a new activity. When you play board games with your kids, you can help them explore the world of games and learn about the world at the same time. Here are some ways to kick off a board game night with your kids:
- Find classic board games your family can enjoy. Find board games that are accessible to all levels of experience, so that everyone can enjoy them. If your kids are young, try out games that are designed specifically for toddlers. Once they’re a little older, you can find games your kids will love.
- Engage your kids in the game before you play. If your kids are old enough, they can help you set up the game and explain rules as you do so. This will help them understand the game and see it as a collaborative experience. It also shows them how to be helpful to others, so they’ll appreciate being included.
- Create a space conducive to playing games. Create a space that’s clean and uncluttered. Clear your table and close any open doors or windows so you won’t get distracted. Create a space that’s relaxing and welcoming.
- Stock your board game supply cabinet. Get a board game for your kid’s age and interest level. If you want to get more advanced games, you’ll need a larger cabinet. You can also buy a few starter kits to get you started with the basics. You can also get expansions or new games as your kids grow older and into new interests.
- Choose a time that works for everyone. Most families have different work schedules, children’s activities and school commitments. Find a time that works with everyone’s schedules, whether that’s after school or on the weekend.
- Make sure you’re all on board. If someone in the family doesn’t like board games, they’ll likely be distracted or bored. Find a way to include everyone before you start playing.
Which Classic Board Games Should You Play Together?
There are many classic board games that almost everyone will enjoy, but it can be helpful to pick a few that are better suited to your family. If your family is more interested in competitive games, you might want to choose competitive games like chess or poker for example. If teamwork is more important, you might choose games like Monopoly or Risk. Before you head to the store, consider these factors when choosing classic board games for your family:
- Classic Board Games for Kids: Some classic board games for kids include traditional classics like Monopoly and Sorry, as well as newer games like Apples to Apples, Game of Thrones and Pandemic. Select games that are appealing to young kids while also allowing older ones to participate.
- Classic Board Games for Families: If you have multiple kids in your family, you might want to select classic board games that are gender-neutral. You can find games like Sorry! and Taboo that appeal to both boys and girls. You can also find games that appeal to younger and older kids.
- Competitive Board Games: Competitive games can be exciting, but they can also be frustrating. Select classic board games that don’t have too many rules or too many pieces. Choose games that allow for more improvisation and creativity.
- Gender-Neutral Classic Board Games: When choosing classic board games for your family, think about how you want to play as well. Are you looking for a more collaborative experience? Or, do you prefer a more competitive one?
Which Classic Board Games Should You Skip?
The best way to figure out which classic board games you should skip is to simply ask your family which games they’d like to play again. But if you need some help, here are a few games to avoid.
- Card games: There are lots of great card games out there, but classic card games like Uno or Spades could be too random for your family. Look for games with more strategy and depth.
- Game show or trivia games: These games are often designed as party games and are not meant to be played with a levelheaded approach. You might want to skip classic games like Jeopardy or Family Feud and instead try more accessible games, like Guess Who?
- Strategy games: Classic strategy games are often very complex and difficult to learn. You might want to skip these games, or find a more advanced one for older kids.
- Miniatures games: These games often use tiny pieces and are usually very complex. You might want to skip these games, or find an easier one for younger kids.
Playing board games with your kids doesn’t have to be complicated. Here’s how to do it right:
- Be patient with yourself and others. Forget about winning and instead remember why you’re playing in the first place. This will help you stay positive and enjoy the experience.
- Make sure everyone is included. Make sure to include kids and anyone in your family who may be bored by the activity. This will help everyone have a better time. Learn more about Board Games for Adults here.
- Don’t be a “board game purist.” Don’t get stuck in the mindset that only classic board games can be fun. Look for games that are fun for everyone in your family.
- Set a good example. If you’re playing a game, play it with enthusiasm and grace. This goes for board games and everything in life.