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Board Games Every Family Should Have

Board Games Every Family Should Have – 7 board games every family should have and what they teach children. Here are some reviews and recommendations of board games and what kids learn by playing them…

Chutes and Ladders

Best for ages 3 to 5
What kids learn: To take turns, count spaces, and accept rewards and consequences.
The basics: Spin the wheel to move your pawn up the board. Land at the base of a ladder and you get to climb up. But if you stop at the top of a chute, you’ll slide back down. The first one to make it to the last space wins.


Best for ages 4 and up
What kids learn: Counting and sportsmanship
The basics: Be the first player to send your four game pieces all the way around the board, moving spaces determined by the “Pop-o-matic,” a plastic popping dome that houses the die. Push it down, and pop – the die rolls. This game is great with four players.


Best for ages 4 and up
What kids learn: Counting and sportsmanship.
The basics: Move your pieces around the board until you get them all home. But be prepared: Your opponent can bump you or make you switch places. Depending on how well your kids are getting along that day, you’ll see how much sympathy or vengeance they have when considering a “bump.”


Best for ages 5 and up
What kids learn: Counting and sportsmanship
The basics: This game resembles sorry, but uses marbles. You have mazes to work through to get your four game pieces “home.” On the way, you can land on opponents and send them back to start.

Scrabble Junior

Best for ages 4 and up
What kids learn: Spelling, reading, following rules.
The basics: Players take turns placing the tiles on letters and earn points by completing words (the words are already spelled out on the board and include picture clues).


Best for ages 5 and up
What kids learn: Geometry, spatial skills, strategy.
The basics: The goal is to place as many of your pieces as possible on the board (each must touch another piece of the same color at the corners). You can strategically block your opponents to improve your chances of laying down more pieces. My kids love this game and their friends did as well, so we bought it for them as a birthday present.


Best for ages 7 and up
What kids learn: Math, persistence, fair play.
The basics: You and your opponent hide ships of different sizes on a grid and then take turns “shooting” at each other’s boats. Kids have to be able to call out a point on the grid using the x and y axis. They won’t even realize they’re doing the math! The first to sink all the enemy’s vessels wins. I played this with my older brother all the time as a kid and loved it so much I kept playing it even though I lost almost every time!

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