No matter what age your kids are, as a mom it’s important to keep the kids amused as often as possible. Of course TV and toys are a great distraction for kids but one thing that’s both fun and a great way to enjoy some quality family time is by playing games.
These games don’t need to be expensive, and can involve anything from simple pens and paper to going on a quest! Depending on the age of your kids, the time and ability you all have, you’ll find that there are many games to suit your situation, some of which are even free!
One of the best 2-player games to play on a rainy day or long trip is connect 4. This simple game can be played using the classic blue game board with red and yellow counters, or you could play a paper-based version with colored markers on a grid. It’s great fun if there’s just you and your child, or if you have two children within a close age range playing against each other.
Similarly, a game like battleship can pass hours and teach children about strategies and patterns. However this game is also only a 2-player game and because of both small pieces and the comprehension levels required, it may not be suitable for younger children.
One favorite that can be played with many people is the school favorite of hangman. Again it’s probably more suitable for kids of school age as it’s mostly to do with spelling, but there are hours of possibilities to be had from this game which is essentially free as you only need a pen and paper to play.
Other free games which are fun to play include the old school favorite ‘heads down, thumbs up’. This is a great game to play if you have a bigger family or if the kids have friends over. It doesn’t cost a penny as it only requires a culprit and your thumbs! It sparks great interest and keeps the kids attention as they try to figure out who done it!
If you are more creative, why not make your own game from scratch? This then turns into double bonding time with the kids, letting them unleash their artistic side before actually playing a game. One of the best games to do this with is bingo. It’s fairly easy to make your own bingo cards using simple card/paper and colored pens. You could even add in a theme to the bingo cards to make it more fun and relative to the kids. For example each bingo card could have its own Disney character on, or could feature folks from their favorite TV show.
Other great inventive gaming ideas include creating a quest of some sort, letting children follow clues until they find a prize or hidden treasure. Simply create clues on small bits of card and leave them around the house and/or garden if you have one and the weather permits! You could turn it into a timed game or simply let the kids take their time and see who is victorious. They’ll get the chance to explore and stay active whilst learning on your quest. You could even hide clues in places that can teach the kids good behaviors, such as in the laundry basket or the toy box.
There are plenty of other great household pastime games to enjoy with your kids, but these are just a few of my favorites. Maybe next time the kids are stuck indoors and bored, you could try playing one of these simple, fun games with them.