Our daughter LOVES board games. Every Christmas and Birthday she has a new one on her list. I try to make a point of making time to play one with her at least twice a week if not more. She twists her Dad’s arm to play a few times a month too, and when her friends come over at least one board game is played if not several.
Over her 11 years of life we have purchased and played a lot of board games with her, some she liked but my husband and I hated. Some my husband and I liked but she really did not care for.
Here are 15 games that the family agrees are fun and worth purchasing
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Blink is a fast paced card game great for pattern recognition skills. My daughter loves it because it is fun and addicting. I love it because we can complete 3 rounds in under 15 minutes, so even on my busiest days I can squeeze in a few rounds with her.
UNO is a classic that I loved when I was a child and am now sharing with my daughter. Great for those nights you have a bit more time because it can take a while. Make some hot cocoa sit back and bond as you play.
When I don’t have time for a full game of Scrabble, SLAM is a close second. It works on children’s ability to spell small words too.
4. In A Pickle
In A Pickle is a super silly yet super fun game that will stretch your child’s creative thinking skills.
Yahtzee will brush up your child’s math skills without them knowing it.
6. Connect 4
Another fast yet enjoyable game that can be squeezed into a busy day is Connect 4.
My daughter got Pictureka at a yard sale and we both love it! Right now it is our current favorite game that we play at least a few times a month together.
The original Monopoly is great when you have a whole evening ahead of you to play but if you are more pressed for time Monopoly Junior is just as fun and works on basic money skills yet takes under an hour to play (the original game has been known to last for hours in our home).
You need the whole family for Apples to Apples, or better yet several families. Great game for gatherings, very fun. There is also a junior edition available.
Scrabble is a classic that in our house requires a dictionary close by so that cheaters can be challenged.
During the summer on our front porch you could hear “you sunk my battleship” at least once a week.
12. Candy Land
Candy Land is getting pushed to the back of the game shelf more and more now due to my daughter getting older (she is currently 11), but when she young was Candy Land was a favorite, so much so the pieces are looking really worn now.
Chutes and Ladders is a simple game that is fun for all ages. As you can see from the photo in our house, my husband get pretty emotionally involved in this game!
14. The Game Of Life
Make sure you allow a whole evening for The Game Of Life, but it so much fun and the more people who play the funnier it gets.
My absolute favorite childhood game (UNO is a close second). It seems whenever hubby plays a board game with our daughter Sorry over 75% of the time he chooses Sorry so I am guessing it is a favorite of his too.
Now that you know a few great board games though how do you afford to start collecting them. Well as a mom of a board game loving child I have picked up……
7 different ways to save money on board games
1. Shop Sales
Board games tend to go on sale just before Christmas, especially at stores like Target or Toys R Us, watch flyers and deal sites for the best deals.
2. Use Coupons
Board game companies often release coupons of the most popular games at various times of the year. I find out about them by following Money Saving Mom.
3. Stock Up During After Christmas Sales
I have purchased board games for us much as 75% off at Walmart, Meijer, Target and Barnes & Noble. I store them to use as Birthday gifts for my daughter and her friends throughout the year.
4. Yard Sales
My daughter has purchased a few board games to add to her collection from yard sales. Word of caution, make sure to take the time to read what should be in the box and then check inside and make sure the pieces are all there.
5. Game Swaps With Friends
Children get bored of playing the same game over and over and so do parents. To enlarge your collection without emptying your pocketbook ask another family if they would consider trading a few games with your for a month or two with the agreement of “if you loose a piece you repurchase the game for them”.
6. Thrift Stores
Thrift stores often get great games donated, again just like at a yard sale I advice you to take the time to make sure none of the pieces are missing.
7. Use Swagbucks
Make your Swagbucks account your family game night fund, and save up points to cash in for gift cards to Target, Walmart, Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
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We are board gamers at my house too. Sorry is my younger daughter’s favorite while my older girl (12) loves “Ticket to Ride” and “Puerto Rico.”
I have not hear of any of those, I will have to check them out.
Aimee May says
Ticket to Ride is very good!
Barb @ A Life in Balance says
Woohoo! We have a number of the games on your list. I need to look for SLAM. It sounds like a great game for kids learning their sight words; I have 2 practicing them right now, and another one learning them next year in Kindergarten.
Thanks for sharing your list at Motivation Monday.
Yes SLAM is excellent for learning sight words. When I first started with my daughter I handicapped myself a bit when I played it with her to give her a chance to keep up.
Loved these suggestions. Hubby and I love playing board games and we are grandparents!! I posted this on my FB page for others to read.
I used to always buy a new game for the family for Christmas and then we spend New Year’s Eve playing it! Many memories there. Our newest favorite is not a board game but a dice game called Tenzi. It is a blast for any age
I will have to look that one up, I have never heard of Tenzi before.
our family favorite has been the Amazing Labyrinth by Ravensburger. All ages can play.
Ann Marie says
My son is 3 and loves Candy Land which I found at a yard sale years ago to play with our nephew.
We just bought Chutes and Ladders and he has a difficult time seeing the numbers and board graphics so do my husband and I. It is strangely squished looking. So we will be hunting for a new board at thrift stores. The Milton Bradley one is good especially the one from the 80’s but shipping was a lot on Ebay.
Our family loves Blokus. You can play with two players, but is more fun and challenging with three to four players.
I haven’t played Blokus before I will have to check it out.
There is a German game called Mensch ärgere Dich night that is similar to but even older than Sorry, and my family likes it better than Sorry, in case you want to give it a try. You may have to do some translating with google translate for the rules, however.
I am going to have to take a look at this game. I LOVE Sorry.