Games for Family Game Night

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In this fast-paced world, time for family togetherness is often hard to come by. Juggling your kiddos’ hobbies and activities and your own work schedules can make it feel as if there is just no time left to do anything together. Combat the busyness and make time by planning a regular family game night. Game nights help coax your family to the dinner table and entice them to put their busy lives on pause and join together in a competitive bonding activity.

In this fast-paced world, time for family togetherness is often hard to come by. Juggling your kiddos’ hobbies and activities and your own work schedules can make it feel as if there is just no time left to do anything together. Combat the busyness and make time by planning a regular family game night. Game nights help coax your family to the dinner table and entice them to put their busy lives on pause and join together in a competitive bonding activity.

Game Night excitement

Your family members will be more likely to make room in their schedules on game night if they are excited about the prospect. In the days leading up to your planned game night, hype the activity. Create invitations to give out to your family members, place fliers on their doors or post a notice on the refrigerator. The more exciting you can make the activity seem, the more likely your family members are to eagerly anticipate its arrival.

End Boredom with Board Games

Board games are an easy game night option. Instead of taking time to plan an original activity, buy a collection of board games from which your family members can select. Pick board games at your kiddos’ levels, such as Chutes and Ladders or checkers for younger kids and brain-engaging games such as Monopoly, Pictionary, Scrabble, Cranium or Hoopla for older game players. Strategize and develop your kids’ minds as you build civilizations in Parthenon or sink their vessels in trusty classics like Battleship. Using board games takes the pressure off you, as all you then need to do is whip out the trusty, mass-produced games come game night.

Create Card Sharks

Try card games in place of a board game. Keep younger players in the action with a kid-friendly game like Go Fish. Play a game like Rummy to allow your slightly older children to practice their math and problem-solving skills. Get your teens in the game with a friendly stakes game of poker using candy or prizes as betting chips. You could use this time to slip in a few "teaching moments" about the negative effects of gambling, turning game night into another life lesson for your children.

Family Physical Education

Family game night does not have to be sedentary. Add some action to your game night by playing a decidedly physical game, such as Twister. Get the whole family sweating by selecting a video game that requires movement, like the Nintendo Wii video gaming system.

Reward your Winners

Family game night is nowhere near as fun if there isn’t an incentive to win. Keep your family’s attention by buying desirable prizes, such as scratch-off lottery tickets or boxes of candy, or by making coupons good for getting out a chore for the week.

Keep Score

Keep your family coming back for more by keeping score of game night victories. Make a chart on which you can record the winner of each round of game night. Place this chart on your family fridge, and update it each week. As your family members see the chart throughout the week, they will become even more eager to take part in game night and declare or retain victory over others in the family. To build a little more excitement, put one member in charge of game night each week–that person then comes up with the invitations, the games and the prize ideas.

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