Besides being a lot of fun, Family Game Nights benefit kids in a lot of different ways!
Social Interaction: Playing games allows kids to learn from you and from each other. It encourages a sense of connectedness and respect among family members.
Learning: Games are a learning tool. For instance, Clue is good for learning deductive reasoning. Scrabble teaches math and spelling skills and Jenga teaches eye-hand coordination.
Life Skills: Games teach important life skills such as patience, concentration, teamwork, honesty, responsibility, cooperation, making choices, perseverance and learning to be accept wins and losses graciously.
Different games teach different types of skills. Here are a few examples:
Yahtzee: Math skills: counting, totaling and record keeping
Scrabble: Vocabulary and spelling skills, math skills
Sorry!: Counting, colors, strategy
Clue: Memory, deductive reasoning, and record keeping
Monopoly and the Game of Life: Attention span, problem solving, strategy, negotiation, compromise, money skills
Payday: Planning and money management skills
Jenga: Eye-hand skills, perception, observation, concentration
So turn off that TV, clear off the table and enjoy a game tonight! It should be fun, so pick games that match your child's age and development and that everyone enjoys playing. You don't have to go buy a lot of new games - Try some of the old stand-bys like Charades, Tic Tac Toe and Name That Tune. Teach your kids some of your favorite game from your childhood!