After two or three weeks of being mostly at home due to the C-thing I ordered a few more board games to play as a family. They are a fun way to keep every member engaged and off screens.
And it was nice to try something new too.
And board games often include lots of other, social and cognitive, skills as well. Think team work, negotiation, following rules and logic.
There are lots of classics like Monopoly and Scrabble, however, there are more amazing family board games and I want to share our favourites with you today. Because it would be a shame if you would miss out on them. Some of them are all about strategy, others come down to luck, but all of them are super fun.
But before I will go on to my list, I want to share some points on what to look for in a Family Board Game:
Number of players
As you know we are a big family so I check how many people can play.
Playing time is something to consider. We have shorter games but also some that require some strategy thinking for longer. Have a look at the games you already have and see where you can add or go for a new challenge. The games I ordered just now are all rather short because I wanted something to play after lunch before we go for the last bit of school assignments. Or when we come home from the park and I do not want the kids to watch TV immediately.
Our youngest is currently 4 1/2 years old and very good at UNO, memory, and even manages Carcassone quite well. When I buy a new game I pay attention to the age rating to determine if the difficulty level will suit what I am looking for.
And now, our favourite board games. You will see that there are some classics, something for a little one:one time, something for everyone, for little ones (that the older siblings enjoy too!):
Always different, not too long, and you can make it more interesting over time by adding fun extensions.
Your fields, roads, and cities grow by placing game tiles in an attempt to build up your land. After placing a tile, you can score points by putting a “follower” piece on the items you built. Lots of options, possibilities, some strategy, and logic. A game that turns quickly!
Get it here.
The absolute classic but so good. Great brain game moment that trains creativity, spelling, as well as maths by keeping score. And definitely very fun! Leonor is 7 and enjoys it very much. But I think it is a great game where you can team up with younger children as well.
To start the game, each player draws a certain number of tiles, and then players take turns creating words on the board, building off existing words and earning points for each letter. You can increase your points by landing on designated spaces for double or triple word or letter scores.
Get it here.
This is one of the games I ordered recently. All children can play, it is quick, we can take it anywhere, and it is strategic.
And it is so easy and simple: Choose a colour, grab your stack and start laying down tiles until someone sneaks a line of five, either horizontally, vertically or diagonally.
Get it here.
Another classic! And you probably played it many times. My little ‘tick’ is to find really cool and quirky memory games to make it even more fun. At the moment I play it lots with Josephine when the others need to do school work and I want to keep her away from the screen. Memory games are a great way to boost memory skills and also help with strategy, thinking, and concentration. Currently I play memory a lot with Josephine whilst the others do their homework tasks.
One of my favourites is the face memory, because there is always some story telling included as well. About the outfits, hair, or somebody we know that looks very similar to the child on the card.
Another fantastic one is from Petit Collage. The Ice Pops are so cute
Only two can play here but it is great for some one:one time.
A cute game for little people is this version.
I highly recommend this book for little chess starters that explains in easy words the world of chess and gives some tips too.
This game needs no explanation — just a space in your game closet! We love Jenga for its ease of play.
And whether you play alone or with a group, this game is always fun. Build a tower from the 54 small wooden blocks and take turns removing one block from within the tower and placing it back on the top. The tower grows taller and more unstable with every move. The last person to successfully place a block before the tower tumbles is considered the winner.
Get the rainbow version here.
This compact matching game is the perfect size to store in your purse and bring out when your family needs a distraction. It is always in our backpack when we are out and also always comes on holidays.
You will get 55 round cards and each card has a random array of symbols on it. Once the top card on the deck is flipped over, it is a race to see who can spot the matching symbol between their card and the deck card. You have to be quick and a good spotter!
Get it here. (and pssst, there is a cool Harry Potter version too)
Settlers of Catan
This adventure-based game is perfect for up to four players around the age of eight (again, good game for teams), who will all battle to collect resources and build settlements on the Island of Catan. There are some rules and obstacles that make the game super fun — players can trade resource cards, sabotage each other with the robber game piece and more as they race to become the conqueror of Catan.
A board game of trading, strategy, tactical skill, and luck that is easy and fast paced. There are numerous expansion packs, including an extension for five to six players, and even a “Game of Thrones” edition.
Get the original here.
From early childhood right through to adulthood we enjoy playing with puzzles. Because we like the challenge, the thinking and exercise for our minds. Puzzles are also an important educational learning tool for children. That is because they provide many skills like fine motor, problem solving, hand eye coordination, and self esteem once your hard work is done and you can see the beautiful puzzle you created.
There are many different versions out there, for all ages and tastes. I will share three that I love very much:
Everyone loves The New Yorker and we all enjoy their illustrations. Did you know that they have jigsaw puzzles with some of their covers? Have a look!
I love that Paris Map Puzzle!
Do you, and/or your children, like animals. This cat puzzle is adorable and there is a dog version too.
This race-and-chase game is so addictive and super easy to work out. It is especially fun for younger kids but really the whole family enjoys it.
Players compete to be the first to send four pieces all the way around a board. And pieces are moved according to the roll of a die which means pressing the dome of the pop-die roller, causing the die to jump and roll.
Get it here.
Interested to see more toys? How about some wonderful educational wooden toys or science and art combined in cool toys?