It seems like fewer and fewer families are taking the time to play board games. Between the business of our lives and the rise of technology, family game night seems to be getting edged out.
But there are so many benefits to sitting around a table, face-to-face with your kids and playing a game together.
Board games give you the chance to connect as a family. When you set aside the stresses of the day and just focus on having fun, it’s easier to build bonds and strengthen family ties.
Games open lines of communication up between you and your tweens. Let’s face it, there are times when it’s hard to talk to middle schoolers. But when you’re discussing strategy and focusing on the game, conversations seem to flow easier.
Teamwork is essential to many board games, giving family members the opportunity to support and encourage one another.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to set aside hours for your game time.
There are plenty of choices that take 30 minutes or less to complete, but are still incredibly fun. You’ll still reap the benefits, even if you’re not spending an entire evening playing a bunch of board games.
Latice Hawaii is easy to learn, fast-paced, and as competitive as you'd like it to be.
Players try to lay down the tiles on their rack, by matching them with others on the board. The more sides you connect, the better. Nothing is removed from play, so it can be tricky to get rid of your pieces.
There are special spaces on the board and wind tiles that can shift everything, so while it's easy to play, it can be challenging to master.
A wonderful combination of award-winning Codenames and classic Disney characters. A perfect match for any Disney-loving family.
Cards containing Disney characters and locations are placed face-up in a 25 card grid.
Players work in pairs and each team is given a set of treasure cards. The goal is to get your partner to identify all the cards in the grid that match the ones in your hand, by giving them one-word clues.
Sometimes the clues relate to more than one card from the grid, so you have to be careful with your descriptions.
In this fun game, players try to match answers with everyone else.
One player reads a random question from a card, like what's the best ice cream flavor and everyone writes down an answer. To win, you'll need to come up with the most common response, not necessarily your true feelings.
Everyone who answers the same as the majority gets a cow chip. If you're the odd one out, you may be stuck with the dreaded pink squishy cow that could prevent you from winning.
Whatever you do, stick with the herd, don't stand out.
This cooperative game is fun for families, especially if you're a fan of the movie.
Players work together to keep the Sanderson sisters from completing their potion before the sun rises.
Everyone places cards into the cauldron, trying to match colors or ingredients in order to ruin the concoction. But even though you're working together, you can't share what's in your hand. Instead, you have to ask each other questions, like do you have any blue cards, in order to know what to play.
It can get quite challenging, especially since the sisters cast spells on you while you're trying to beat them. But if you can ruin their potion three times, you'll save the town's children.
If your family is a fan of Harry Potter, then this version of Trivial Pursuit could be perfect for you. Based on the movies (not the books) this quick play edition includes over 600 questions for you to answer.
Categories include: The Dark Arts, Hogwarts, Magical Spells and Potions, Magical Objects, Magical People, and Animals and Magical Creatures.
The player who answers 12 questions correctly wins.
Players try to match the descriptive word from a green apple card with a red card in their hand. For example, if the word on the green card is fuzzy, select one of your red cards that you feel matches it best. Will you play Eiffel Tower, socks, waves, etc.?
If yours is chosen, you get to keep the card.
This version contains family-friendly words and descriptions and is fun for tweens and adults.
When it's your turn, roll the die and read aloud the definition on the card that corresponds to that number, like someone who designs buildings. The first player to blurt out the correct answer (architect) gets to move their game piece.
Sounds easy, but most clues have synonyms, so it can be challenging to select the answer that's on the card.
The cards contain both junior and regular questions, so it's perfect for families.
Played like classic rummy, players try to form runs or sets with three or more tiles, in an attempt to be the first one to get rid of all of their numbers. Combinations can either be all the same number with different color tiles or a run of numbers, all in the same color tiles.
Once tiles are played, other players can rearrange them into different groupings to lay down more of their numbers.
You really have to think on your feet and use your critical thinking skills to see how you can reuse the tiles other players laid down.
To begin the round, choose a category list and roll the die to see what letter everyone will use. Turn over the timer and start thinking of words that fit each category on the list that starts with the letter that was rolled.
For example, if the letter F was chosen on the die, you need to quickly write down answers to all of the categories on the list, like dog breeds, car brands, and articles of clothing with words that all start with the letter F.
When time runs out, everyone shares their answers. Matching answers cancel each other out, so try to be as creative as possible.
Before the game begins, everyone creates a list of trigger words that they'll use during the game. To play, the first person will turn over the timer and announce one word from their list.
Players race to be the first one to blurt out 5 words from a song containing the trigger word. For example, if the word is dog, whoever starts singing the lyrics of a song containing the word dog scores a point.
From new favorites to the classics, these board games for teenagers will provide hours of fun for you and your older kids.
More Middle School Board Games
Need even more game ideas for your tweens and teens? Here are some your older kids will love.
If you’re looking for a cooperative strategy game for your next family game night, look no further than Pandemic board game. Families rush to cure diseases before an outbreak infects the world.
Ready to laugh until you cry? Check out these hilarious games for older kids.
With these board games for middle school families – is yours on the list?
I love homeschooling! Learning is a way of life for our family. Most days you will find us exploring our Central Florida community, having fun while learning. I am constantly looking for new and interactive ways to engage my older children.