Games Are So Important for Learning

I cannot get enough of game play. Whether that means me playing or just the kids, there are so many great games out there to reinforce learning.

Take Charades for example. The way you play is easy! Players act out a word or phrase without speaking or making sounds (so hard sometimes!). The other members of the team try to guess what the actor is portraying. The objective is for your team to guess the word or phrase as quick as possible. We have this game that Amazon offers for a really decent price. I can’t remember where we got it; possibly a Christmas present from a relative, but we love this version. I’ve seen and used many, and I like this one the best. It’s easy to play and has different levels for different ages. Check it out here.

Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

We use Bananagrams a lot as well. The case of letters is so small that I leave it on our table in the winter months for something quick and easy to do while we’re killing time in the darkness and the cold. If you’ve never played, it’s like Scrabble-light…sort of. This is a word game that uses lettered tiles to spell words. You have to arrange your tiles into an ever-evolving crossword puzzle that you can create and rearrange constantly until players use all of the letters. Whoever does this yells, “Bananas!” and wins the game. It’s addicting, fun, and builds vocabulary and spelling skills. Good to keep a Scrabble or dictionary around as a resource. There are a couple of versions. We play the original and the kids’ version.

Another classic game that seems to live on and on is the fishing game. There are many brands, and I honestly cannot remember who made it first. We have had a few cheaper knock-offs through the years, all of which have withstood the play of many little hands. Like this one, the object of the game for little ones is to use the fishing pole to grab a fish at their turn without dropping it. Taking turns until all the fish are gone, the winner is the person who has the most! This activity supports fine motor skills. Something my kids have always done with their fish at the end is sort them either by color or shape or eye stickers, depending on the version of the game and how the fish look.

The point is, including games is a brain break. Kids work hard! Learning and play is their job. Sometimes the academic grind of book reading and journal writing or experiment doing takes a toll and they need a different way to learn or a review to reinforce lessons just learned. Don’t forget that card games count! Go Fish, Rummy, and War are always “on the table”.

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