Sidney and I both come from families with strong board game traditions. We grew up playing games around the kitchen table with our parents and siblings and at extended family gatherings. These sessions served us well to teach the values of competitiveness and sportsmanship.
Over the past couple of years we have introduced the magic of board games to Sloan (Beau isn’t quite at that point yet). It has been fun to watch her follow directions and think critically. If you are looking for a good board game to introduce to your young children, I thought it would be beneficial to list the fives games that are currently in Sloan’s rotation.
Sequence For Kids – This is the game that we are playing a lot these days. The goal is to use the cards in your hand to place chips on the corresponding game board depiction to score a “sequence” of four-in-a-row. Sequence For Kids is based on strategy so it is pretty cool to watch the wheels turn in Sloan’s brain as she plots her moves. Not only does Sloan really like the game but Sid and I do too! We are planning to purchase the original Sequence game for adult nights.
Guess Who – A favorite of mine as a kid, Sloan also enjoys Guess Who. The characters on the cards have changed dramatically over the years with a better representation of females and minorities but the process of elimination concept is still the same. This game also requires strategy and Sloan has mastered the questions she needs to ask to put her in position to win.
Encanto House of Charms – Sloan was given this board game for her birthday and it has been nice to add a non-traditional option to our collection. Instead of trying to beat an opponent, you work with your fellow players to win. The goal is to keep the Madrigal house from losing its magic by combining charms to prepare the rooms of the Encanto characters. This game has taught Sloan teamwork and the power of building others up as there is a feel-good “compliment’ component to the game.
Zingo – We introduced this game to Sloan a couple years ago and we still bust it out pretty regularly. This is best described as a Bingo training game. Players use a contraption known as a “Zinger” to spit out tiles. If the photo on the tile matches a photo on your game board, you place the tile on that corresponding spot. The first person to blackout their card wins. Although no strategy is needed for this one, it has a clear objective and teaches object recognition…a great starter game!
Candy Land – This classic introduced Sloan to the world of board games and the important concepts of winning, losing, and rule following. Candy Land is basic enough to play at a very young age as the rules are simple. The game also grabs the attention and imagination of toddlers with the candy theme and colorful board. Even though Candy Land received its most intense play from Sloan a couple years ago, we still play it every now and then.
I believe board games are important to the development of children. Because of this, I am always on the lookout for new ones to bring home. If you can recommend a great game for a 5-year-old that your family enjoys playing, please pass it along. Don’t Blink.