Are your kids spending too much time on their gadgets? While technology has brought entertainment to new levels, it also means that many of us are spending time isolated and focused on our devices. This doesn’t fare well for family bonding, and a lot of us find ourselves only doing things with our children during holiday trips. If this sounds familiar, don’t feel bad because many parents are in the same boat.
One good way to get all members of the family spending time together in a fun way that doesn’t involve electronic devices is board games. It may seem somewhat old-school, but board games are great to keep your kids’ eyes away from a screen for a while and to help encourage their communication and sportsmanship skills. There are a wide array of suitable board games for family time. Here are our top picks.
Board Games For Family With Children Under 12
Operation is a game that doesn’t involve much thinking, but it definitely tests the hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills of players. The objective of this game is to “operate” on the patient by removing different items, all without making the buzzer go off. Fun for all ages, Operation will have your young children squealing and laughing as they improve their focus and practice patience.
Also known as Mancala in English, congkak is a turn-based game you’ve probably played in your childhood. While only two people can play at one time, it’s still one of the better board games for family as it’s enjoyable to watch even when you’re not playing it yourself. The rules are also very easy to learn, and it’s great for getting children to improve their speed and practise their strategy skills.
Snakes and Ladders
Another timeless classic that’s easy to learn for children, Snakes and Ladders was a hit many decades ago, and will still be a hit with your little ones now. A straightforward game of moving forward but also facing unexpected setbacks, this board game for the family to enjoy together is perfect for teaching your kids some life lessons too. Don’t be surprised if you find them playing it with their siblings during other times too; this game can get quite competitive!
Board Games For Families With Teens
With the current Covid-19 situation, Pandemic (available on Game Plus) is a marvellous game to play with teens to help them understand how the world can curb the devastation caused by an outbreak. The game involves players taking on different roles and trying to work together to stop the pandemic, which is great for cooperative gameplay between all family members. Pandemic also has many expansion packs you can buy to make the gameplay even more challenging and varied, which means this is one of those board games for the whole family that you likely be playing again and again when boredom strikes.
Root (available on HOU-MI Store) is not a very well-known board game, but it offers one to two hours of fun for the whole family. In this game, two to four players play as woodland creature characters who are battling it out to gain control of the land. The strategy involved can be a bit intense; this is why the game is recommended for those above the age of 12. There are also expansions available which allow more players (up to six) to be involved in the game. Consider getting the expansion if you have more members in your family.
Monopoly: Cheater’s Edition
Like Monopoly but feel it’s a little dull sometimes? Opt for the Monopoly: Cheater’s Edition (available on Game Plus) instead, then! This board game is fun for the whole family because it breaks the usual rules of Monopoly. Instead, players can borrow, scheme, and cheat their way into winning the game. However, if they are caught, there are consequences! There’s bound to be a lot of yelling and laughter, so it’s perfect to get everyone together on a weekend night.
Board Games For Extended Family Parties
Having some siblings and their kids over? Then liven up the get-together with a game of Ultimate Werewolf (available on EFUTS). This family board game is suitable for members of all ages, though children above the age of 10 would probably enjoy it more. Expect a lot of accusing, voting, and doubting as the group tries to unveil the “werewolves” among them who are going around “killing” innocent people.
Pictionary’s reputation as a fun party game for all ages requires no elaboration, but many have the concern that there’s too much paper wasted during the game. Pictionary Air (available on Mattel MY) resolves this issue by providing a device for players to draw in the air, while guessers can hold up their phone to see the picture being drawn on their screen. Fun even for large groups of people, Pictionary Air is sure to result in some heavy-duty bonding time!
Sushi Go Party!
While more a card game for family fun rather than a board game, Sushi Go Party! allows up to eight players, compared to the original Sushi Go game. This game is a “pick and pass” card game that is very fast-paced; players gain points for collecting dishes of the same type or making the best combinations of sushi items. Very easy to learn and very non-threatening for the shyest of players, Sushi Go Party! is a great addition to any event you host for the extended family.
Spend Time And Have Fun With Your Family Playing Different Games
When generational gaps come into play, a good way to incite communication and bonding is through board games. Of course, card games work too, and if you’re more tech-savvy and have multiple controllers, console video games are a great way to bond with your kids too. As long as there is an activity to enjoy together, there is bound to be joy and happiness in your home always; what that activity depends on your kids’ and your personal preference!