Board games are a great way to spend fun quality time with the family. With summer coming, the kids will be out of school but needs ways to keep their minds active. Playing outside is excellent, but when the weather doesn’t cooperate, they are stuck in the house and use the dreaded “I’m bored!” Or, maybe you need help keeping the kids busy while traveling. While the games I’m about to share with you aren’t always the best for playing in the car, they are easy to take along to help beat the hotel doldrums.
5 Fun Educational Family Games
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1 – Bananagrams
The classic. The one that started it all for this list. All the required pieces come inside a banana! No board, pen or pencil required to play. Players create words in a crossword-style grid and must use all of their letters up first to win. It is similar to Scrabble, but without all the math! Great for all skill levels and a good way to practice spelling. Recommended for ages 7yrs and up.
2 – Appletters
The letter tiles are kept in an apple pouch. There are a few different levels of play depending on age. This game combines Scrabble with dominoes! Each word must connect to the first or last letter of the previous word. This creates a snake-like chain of words along the table. Definitely good fun for younger children that aren’t quite ready for Bananagrams playing style. The first person to use all of their letter tiles wins!
3 – Pairs in Pears
This set comes in a … you guessed it – Pear! The pear contains four sets of the alphabet in four different patterns. Players make pairs of connecting words in matching patterns. A good game for preschool aged children for learning letter recognition and matching.
4 – Fruitominoes
Nice domino pieces come in a zippered pouch. Instead of using dots, it uses fruit! Connect the fruit like one would connect the number of dots in regular dominoes. Gives it a fun twist for kids. Also is great for younger children that can play matching games but not necessarily number games.
5 – Zip-It
Now this is a good travel game! Again, everything comes in the pouch. This is a two player game where each person has 24 letter cubes. There are letters on all sides of the cubes. It’s similar to Bananagrams where players create words in a crossword-style grid. Any side of the cube can be used, so there should be less issues of running out of certain letters! Though you never know what you might use up that you’ll wish you had later. The first person to use all their letters wins that round. Scoring is done by using the zippers on the pouch by aligning them with the scoring grid. This is a game that can be played in less than a minute – great for waiting rooms!
I’m so happy to have this set. Even though my daughter is too young for these yet, I know they will get lots of use in the near future. I loved word games (and still do) so these are perfect for my family. My favorite right now is probably Fruitominoes! I had a Sesame Street dominoes set when I was a kid and loved it. Soon I can see Rissa playing this and matching up her fruit!
What I really love about each of these games is that you can tailor them to your child’s skill level. They do not require huge vocabularies of obsure words in order to win. You can even change the game up with new challenges and rules to keep the word learning fresh. Like, Pairs in Pears, you could use as a memory matching game rather than a word game.
Each game is available on Amazon and retailers nationwide!
What are your favorite rainy day or on-the-go games?
K Squared Glamour
Tuesday 3rd of April 2012
these games look like a ton of fun that my daughter and nieces and nephews would love! i might just have to get them!
Tuesday 3rd of April 2012
I love Bananagrams! Such a fun game!
We've been playing "Memory" a lot, and The Boy loves it. I hope that once he gets older he'll enjoy playing scrabble, too.