Family Games for Toddlers

Confession- Karl and I are big board game nerds. If it was up to me, I would play some sort of strategy game for several hours every weekend. Some of my favorites are Settlers of Catan and Dominion….don’t judge me. Lucky for us many of our friends like these kinds of games too, so we used to play very frequently before kids. Now that Ricky is getting a little older, I really want to instill in him a love for strategy games as well. I have big dreams for future family game nights! So, I found a few games that are perfect for his age (2.5 years) and would love to share!

  1. Matching/Memory Card Game– this is a childhood staple. There are many versions of this classic game out there, but we settled on a Planes theme. Ricky is not quite able to play according to the rules, but instead lays them all out face-up and pairs the matches together on a table. I think it is important to find cards that your child is already interested in, so he/she will want to participate. Ricky loves the movie Planes so it was exciting for him to find the characters and pair them together.
  2. Silly Faces– make a face colorform game. You take turns spinning an arrow on a board of facial features, and the goal is to be the first one to complete a silly face. I grew up with this game and my mom gave it to Ricky for Christmas. He is obsessed! He already knows all his body parts, so this isn’t necessarily helpful in teaching recognition, but it is a very good first game. Like most toddlers, taking turns is a tough concept for Ricky and this is a great way to practice!
  3. Roll & Play – cube and card game with basic activity prompts. The Easter Bunny brought this for Ricky and so far I am very impressed. There is a large, plush cube of many colors that you toss and then choose a card of the corresponding color. Each color card has a different activity type, i.e. orange is counting, blue is color recognition. This is such a wonderful learning game!

Meet the Silly Face Family!

We also like to play basic games that don’t involve any materials, such as Red Light, Green Light and Simon Says. I’d love to introduce more games into our rotation- any suggestions?