A Place at the Table Blogs

A Place at the Table: Benefits of Board Games for Children

Hello and happy Monday! As you all know, I’m a mom of 3 and I’m homeschooling my youngest 2 kidlets. Since board games are a big part of our life, I’ve often thought of the way that board games can be used to enhance the homeschool lessons that I teach. As we’ve seen, Janeway, my oldest, has used board games to help her learn economics. But board games have benefits for smaller children as well.

Peep loves to play board games. He loves games so much that he has saved up his allowance to buy his own board games. We started Peep with the game that every parent comes to hate, Candyland. Seriously, how many times can you attempt to get to the candy palace before you want to dump the entire game in the trash? But, even Candyland has some benefits for young children. How do you move your game piece from the beginning? You draw a card that has one or two colored squares on it. There are 2 educational opportunities right there. As you play Candyland with your young kiddos, you can work on colors and counting. As they get older and play with younger siblings, you can up the stakes by having your kiddos spell the color on the card they picked.

Candyland – the game that every parent comes to hate.

Board games can also help your child with hand-eye coordination. Your child has to pick up the game pieces and move them around the board in an appropriate manner. If you happen to be playing Trouble, then your child has to be able to put the peg back into the holes on the board. Peep’s favorite, Bugs in the Kitchen, is another game that is good for hand-eye coordination as he has to be able to turn the knives, forks, and spoons to guide the hex bug into his kitchen.

Strategy games can help your children with organizational skills and planning ahead. Peep also likes to play Ticket to Ride: First Journey. He has to plan out the route that he wants to take to get from city to city. He needs to plan ahead so that he has enough colored train cards to complete his ticket. We also reinforce basic math skills when we play First Journey with him by asking how many more green cards he needs and things like that. We also cover a little bit of geography as well.

Ticket to Ride: First Journey

Board games can also help improve your child’s verbal skills. As you are playing games with your kids, you’re helping to explain rules and talking to them about the game. All things that can help your kids communicate.

As you can see, board games are good for your kids! They are also good for adults, but that’s a topic for another day. Go play a game with your kids. Even if it is your millionth game of Candyland.

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