Stuck inside the house during bad weather? Find your family barely has time to talk? Kids complain about boredom? I think I have an answer! Family Game Night…
Do you have a family game night? Why not? This is a great way to connect together in a positive and fun way. In today’s crazy busy schedule and attention demanding environment, the more intentional we are about times when we get together as a family, the better.
We’ve been a family who has a competitive streak, and love playing games. There are some that my husband and I enjoyed from childhood, and some that my kids play over and over. We spend time playing a lot of board games, chess, and cards as a family.
Sometimes the game section of the store can seem daunting- who knows which ones are fun and worth taking home to add to the family’s collection?
Although Christmas has traditionally been the time when we buy games as gifts, there are times during the year when you have the urge to get some new things for the family to use for entertainment together- few electronic games are conducive for family togetherness.
Summer vacations, holiday get-togethers, or just a lazy weekend are all times for having board games on hand for fun times.
5 Reasons – For Playing Games Together
After reading through the reasons, take a trip down memory lane for games you used to play, find some new ones, and get your family game night planned for lots of good old fashioned fun together.
- It’s educational. Lots of games teach skills and thinking ability like strategy and logic.
- It is a good way to relate. Games can incorporate cooperation and communication.
- Games are an opportunity to have fun and see another side of each other, developing healthy competition, and good sportsmanship.
- Games provide stress relief, time to laugh, interaction and focus on each other without demands.
- Game night together provides a sense of belonging together, enjoying a common activity, creating good memories together.
Wikipedia entry for the game of Sequence.
Time Tested Games Rated By My Family
Apples to Apples
This is the one my children love to play together and especially when their friends come over. It is a highly social game, with lots of laughter and interaction.
Mattel Apples to Apples Party Box The Game of Crazy Combinations
This is a game that teens love; one of the first my kids reach for when they have friends over! There is a version for younger kids, and it is one of the best for a group to enjoy. Very lively.
“Roll the dice, move the mice, build a traaaap!”
#1 Game for Teens?
A simple deck of cards. That’s right! Whether you play “war” “crazy eights” or “euchre”.
What are the all time favorite games at my house? Some are present favorites, some I remember well from my childhood.
Chess is a game that my grandfather loved, my parents, my husband and I and several of our kids enjoy and plays chess, as well. One son collects interesting chess boards and pieces. Chess is probably the king of board games, it has a rank of its own.
Monopoly has many renditions, but I remember this as my own number one game to play- and spent literally hours, for more years than I recall, playing this game.
We Played Them All
Risk is the game my cousins and I played all the time with lots of gusto, but my children seemed to rate it as only an average game.
Parcheesi is perennial and highly rated at my house. We bought one of those heirloom ones since we kept wearing out the old regular board game.
Sorry Classic Edition
Heavy duty board, original artwork. I prefer to own the classic games in the best quality I can get. When games are favorites, they get heavy use and this type will last for many years. It is, overall, a more pleasant experience when the materials are higher quality, too.
Sorry For All Ages
The Sorry game is very much like Parcheesi in my book. This is a one that not only did my husband and I (and my kids) play, but I have now played it with my five year old grandson (he gleefully won!).
Games that require a lot of knowledge of the rules, math or spelling skills, might be too advanced for young children, but Sorry is one that has simple colors, rules, and moves forward with the rolls of the dice. That means children who are quite young can participate.
That, and the fact that it comes in a beautiful deluxe version means it ought to be a part of everyones game collection.
All Time Favorites – Games that bridge Generations
Parker Brothers Vintage Game Collection Wooden Book Box Scrabble
As this is a justifiably popular game that has persisted for generations, it is not surprising that there are many versions and levels of quality available. This one is worth getting in the book box form (which I love!) These look wonderful stored on a bookshelf.
Scrabble! Vacation Fun
Scrabble, as soon as someone can spell and read at a basic level they can play “Scrabble”. This used to be the favorite during summer vacations. It is more popular with my generation than with my children’s.
That is no reason to overlook adding it to game nights. This will challenge your vocabulary, and given a challenge, your dictionary skills. For up to four players.
Yahtzee, can be highly competitive… I remember my cousin Dave cried when he didn’t win, once. But mostly it is a simple dice game with an element of chance.
It moves quickly, and provides for plenty of laughs and chatter during the play…which is a large part of why we love games, rights?
Crossing generations, we played this when we were children( I’m a sixty-something now), although mine was the google eyed patient .
It is a game for more little ones, just not under three.
Not for boys only, this game of strategy is enjoyed by my grandson and he is carrying on the tradition of my sons! But girls love this game, too.
Games My Kids Love:
Remember this game? It sure has changed over the years, but kids still love to play it.
Those are perennial favorites with my children and now the grandchildren. If you are looking for something to give as a birthday or Christmas present, these will be great for the family and keep everyone entertained on game nights.
Chess and Chinese Checkers
These two were my Father’s favorites.
When my dad was alive, it never failed that he brought out the Chinese checkers game. It was one that we played at any age. I still have his board – it hangs on the wall, and I have newer versions for the kids and grandkids to use.
Be a Good Sport?
It is impossible to win gracefully at chess. No man has yet said “Mate!” in a voice which failed to sound to his opponent bitter, boastful and malicious. ~A.A. Milne, Not That It Matters, 1919
Any Clue What To Play? – A Game of Mystery
My teens love this game too- and I had it way back when I was a pre-teenager. Introduced to the States in 1949, this British invention has had a successful history of popularity and there are even Clue websites for aficionados.
Parker Brothers Vintage Game Collection Exclusive Wooden Book Box Clue
This is the classic game. Surprisingly the game comes in all sorts of editions from “Family Guy” to “24” to “The Office”.
Games for the Little Ones
Great Way To Spend Quality Time They’ll Remember
These are the ones I played as a youngster and that my children loved when they were little. Classics.
For Little People
- Chutes and Ladders
- Memory game
…And be a good sport.
Jenga – A Game of Skill- Teens Love This Game
First introduced to our family when an aunt bought it for the children one Christmas. They had loads of fun with this, although it isn’t on a “board”.
Suspenseful block building game- you will be surprised at those who can remove blocks and when the whole thing falls. Never the same twice.
Fun doesn’t need to come with a price tag
People never knew we were poor, but out of that poverty came the most incredible inventions – board games, recipes… we never stopped inventing.
Lynn Johnston quotes
Tips from Hasbro Game Company
hosting a family game night at your house
TIPS FOR HOSTING A FAMILY GAME NIGHT
Following National Family Game Night start a routine to host family game nights at home. Below are a few tips to help you get on track:
1. Schedule it!: It doesn’t matter which night of the week you choose – any night will do! Just be sure to make it a priority to keep the appointment, the night will be one to remember!
2. Involve everyone in the planning: Involve the whole family in the planning process, and for variety, rotate responsibilities during each family game night.
3. Game suggestions: Pick age-appropriate games for family members to allow everyone to participate.
4. Fun food “pairings”: A special family game night menu will make everyone look forward to the festivities.
5. Create a tradition: Whether it’s the way that teams are selected, or a 30-minute bedtime extension, establishing a family tradition will create even more excitement around game play.