Family Game Night


One of my very favorite things to do with my family is play games – board games, word games, road games, ball games, you name it.  Today, I am going to focus on games that can be played at the table.  We have kids ranging in ages from 1 to 24, both boys and girls, so there should be games in this list for everyone in your family!  Since we have 13 kids, here is our top 13 (in no particular order):

Spot It and Spot It Junior
This is great for children learning to recognize shapes and numbers.  There are three ways to play the game, two of which can be played with more than two players.  It is all about matching items on a card quicker than your opponent.  My four year old daughter LOVES this game, as does my 8 year old daughter.  For a more fast-paced version, I face off with my grandma!  We have two versions of this game – Doc McStuffins and Frozen.
Disney Pop-Up Magic
This is a great game for children learning to count!  We have three versions of this game – Cinderella, Tangled, and Frozen.  The boards hook together to make one giant board for a longer, more fun game.  When you land on a gem, you have the opportunity to go forward six more if you choose the correct token.  If you land on a villain, you go backwards three spaces.  The highest number needed to count for this game is only 6!  My nephews also enjoy this game.  We have played it with children ages 3-13.
This is a game we saw at Ollie’s and thought we would give it a try.  I am so glad we did.  Even the boys enjoyed it! It is easy enough for our four-year-old but fun and fast-paced enough for our pre-teen boy!  The smurf spins around to give you cards.  You swap, trade, and spin the smurf.  You never know what you are going to get or who is going to win.  It helps with colors, matching, and strategizing.
Rat Cat Bat Splat
This game was a Christmas gift from my grandparents,  I would say it is geared more towards children 8 and up.  My four year old is not able to keep up, and my eight year old struggles with it, but she struggles with reading.  My nine year old is really good at this game.  You roll the dice and have to match a card to what is rolled then SAY what is rolled without hesitation.  It is A LOT of fun!
Don’t Scramble the Egg
This is a Diary of a Wimpy Kid game.  My kids have not read these stories, so I really didn’t know what to expect.  My grandparents brought it up when they came to visit.  They often bring new games to play with the kids.  Someone starts by reading a topic, such as “Outdoor Sport.”  The egg timer is then pressed and passed around the table, person to person as each person answers.  If the buzzer stops on you, you’re out.
This is a fun, fast paced word game.  It starts with a topic on a card, such as “fruit.”  The person who starts names a fruit and presses down the letter they used (tricky letters such as Q, V, X, Y, and Z are not on the board).  Play continues around the board until the letters are gone.  You have ten seconds for your answer and time starts over with each person.  With each round, you have to say more words (2 sports in 10 seconds, 3 types of storms in 10 seconds, 4 types of cars in 10 seconds).  Whoever is the last one left gets the card.  Whoever gets three cards wins.  It sounds difficult, but it really is not.  It is SUPER fun!!!!  The age on this one is tricky.  My nine year old plays it very well, but my 8 year old does not do well at all.  I would say AT LEAST 8 years old for this one.  You don’t want little ones getting discouraged.
Eat It
Eat It is a trivia game about food.  It is set up very similar to Trivial Pursuit and contains categories such as cookies, ice cream, and candy, and snacks,  We play this in teams so that the younger, less knowledgeable children are able to play.  We try to mix the teams up each time, pairing younger children with older children, and never putting the youngest two or oldest two together.  It works out really well, and we all have a great time.  If there is an uneven amount, I just read the cards.
Everyone in our family loves playing Yahtzee!  Even our 1 year old loves rolling the dice! Of course, he doesn’t understand the concepts behind it, but that doesn’t stop him from enjoying it.  I let him roll for me, and I keep score so that there is not confusion or cheating.  I tell the younger kids what they can roll for (If they have a two fours, two sixes, and a three, I say “you can go for fours or sixes”) and leave them the choice.  This is the game the boys ask to play the most!
This is also popular with the males in our family.   I am always amazed at the interesting ways the Jenga pieces get built up!  It definitely takes some ingenuity to outsmart gravity!
Phase 10
This is a card game with ten phases you must complete to win.  You must finish each phase before moving on to the next.  The tricky part is finishing it before an opponent goes out, otherwise you have to repeat that phase.  This is one of MY very favorite card games.  My 9 year old has played this for about a year now.  It does take math skills.
This card game requires counting from 1 to 12 and being the first to get rid of your card pile.  It does take a bit of strategy, but my kids have been playing this since about age 5.
Mad Gab
So far, I am unbeatable at this game, so they tend to not play it often anymore.  For Mad Gab, you read words and try to figure out what the words are actually saying.  For example, “Iran Alt Aweigh Ohm” is “I Ran All The Way Home” and Owl Yukon Heat Buff Hay” is “All You Can Eat Buffet.”  If you enjoy word games, you will definitely enjoy this game!
Apples to Apples Junior
There are three versions of this we have played – Apples to Apples, Apples to Apples Junior, and Apples to Apples Disney.  The latter two are geared more toward young children.  The first is better for teenagers and adults.  Apples to Apples Junior is the one I have found to be great for all ages.  Everyone takes turns being the “judge” on whose card matches the given word.  We have A LOT of laughs with this game!

One thought on “Family Game Night

  1. Pingback: Family Movie Night | sunbeams and heartstrings

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