Whether you’re homeschooling or not, playing games is so important!! Games make kids smart. They do. Think of all the skills kids encounter playing games, whether it’s Candyland as a 4 year-old or Risk as a teenager: First, they’re having fun, so their brains and bodies are less stressed and open to learning. There’s the “winning” incentive which makes them want to try their best. They are learning how to follow rules, and why they are important (a game is zero fun without rules). They learn to take turns. Deal with disappointment. (I’m looking at you, Sorry) They learn what it’s like to be this close to winning and then lose it all (Almost why I can’t stand Chutes and Ladders).
They learn to count points, money, spaces. Be creative and be the first to think of something. Be the first to see something. Hand-eye coordination. They learn to make decisions, how to strategize, how to use logic. Consider all those if-then scenarios. How to literally make the best of the cards they have. They (ideally) learn to lose graciously, the value of honesty, and how to be patient. How to laugh and have fun. And there’s a huge benefit for them to learn to play with others who above or below their level. I can’t think of any better set of skills to give my kids!
Play games with your kids! Our recent favorites are Ticket to Ride, Dutch Blitz, Scrabble, Apples to Apples, Rummikub, Uno, and today we just learned (in my case, re-learned) how to play Skip-Bo and we loved it! Love watching his brain spin as we played. What are your family favorites?