Trying to make learning more fun and hands-on? Why not play a board game? Here are 10+ great games to help your kids learning without them really even knowing it.
This classic board game focuses on spelling and words. Using the letters you have available, you create words in a crossword style – building off the words that both you and your opponent have been building on the board already. This is a great vocabulary builder. The classic edition is designed for ages 8+, but you can also get a Junior version which is suited for 5+, using a pre-printed word option or a plain board to build your own words. And, if you wanted – you can even get a French version of the game to work on your second language skills.
Bananagrams is similar to Scrabble, however it’s not turn-based, it’s speed-based. Make a crossword style word board and whoever gets rid of their tiles first, wins! Besides, it comes in a super cute banana zipper case.
Thinking outside the game’s regular rules, dominoes also make terrific math manipulatives for early adding – simply by having to add up the dots on the tile (imagine the middle line is a + sign!)
Never mind that they a fun toy when you stand them up in a row and knock them down!
Although sort of extreme, Monopoly teaches great skills in business sense, finance, strategy, and math skills like adding, subtracting and multiplication. It can be a very complicated game that takes a large chunk of time, but you can adapt it to your kids’ skill level. Of course, they also offer a variety of Junior versions for younger players that focus more on the concepts of how we use money to pay for things such as entertainment.
This game has long been a favourite at our house. Simple enough for even very young players to participate in, it also works terrifically for older kids as well. Helping develop the concepts behind fractions, this game declares that it can be played 3 ways – however after many years of use, know that even beyond the game the fractions pieces are useful off the board too. Mix and Match the pieces to see how parts work together to create a whole.
Boggle has a shaker with letter dice inside that you shake and set. With a 3 minute timer set, players search for words by connect the letters of touching tiles. The goal is to find as many words as possible in the allotted time frame.
Another way to expand on this game is to leave the board somewhere and every time you walk by, you have to write down a word on the list. After a day or a week, see how many words everyone has accumulated!
This game is a fun finding game – where everyone has their own card tile, and when a game card is flipped over, you have to find the object hidden somewhere in your picture. Each of the objects are things, animals, places, or flags directly found in or related to Canada.
A great way to expand on geography lessons and Canadiana.
Chess is a classic game of strategy and logic. It really involves a lot of skill and mastery to become a chess champion. A terrific game to play to encourage kids to look ahead and problem solve.
Both of these games work on a similar premise: roll the dice, pick which ones to keep and which to roll again, and then add up your score.
Although math is central to the game, it’s almost hidden under the guise of fun.
Think Scrabble – with math. You pick tiles and try to make math equations. The tiles include the signs for adding, subtracting, multiplication, and division along with the numbers. A different way for math review!
A simple deck of cards can be one of the handiest tools you can have in a math lesson. There are so many games you can play to develop math skills, such as Go Fish for number recognition, and War when learning which number is higher.
Of course there are a lot of other ideas too – including dividing the deck between two players and then flipping one card over each at the same time. The first person to either multiply or add the cards together correctly gets the cards.
Adding games to your homeschool shelves can really help your child be excited about learning.
What are your favourite games in the classroom?