Playing games is a big part of our homeschool. Our latest fascination is Qwirkle, a match-the-colors-and/or-shapes game that involves more than a little Scrabble-like strategy. It’s the perfect game for a multi-aged household: younger kids can enjoy simply handling and sorting the colored blocks (while learning their shapes and colors), while older children and adults develop strategy and critical thinking skills in a fun environment.

A great game, for me, is one that meets 4 criteria:

1) It’s fun

2) It’s simple to learn

3) It’s educational (but not overtly)

3) Set-up and clean-up is quick and easy.

Qwirkle meets all 4 criteria.

I’m willing to make some exceptions, of course — I love playing Life, Monopoly and Risk. But these games are not quick to set-up and play, so alas — we don’t play these games nearly as often as the boys would like.

Think, for a minute, about all the skills boys learn from board games. Counting. Sharing. Colors. Adding, subtracting and multiplying. Spelling (Scrabble). Specific facts, depending on the game. My boys love a game called the Lewis and Clark Adventures game (all about the Lewis and Clark expeditiona) and Scrambled States, about United States geography.

Disney has compiled a list of 5 classic board games for boys. Take a look and then tell me: What are some of your favorites?

Published on: January 28, 2009
About the Author
Photo of Jennifer Fink

Jennifer L.W. Fink is a freelance writer, Registered Nurse and homeschool Mom of four boys, ages 11, 8, 5 and 3. Her blog, Blogging ‘Bout Boys, is all about boys – raising them, educating them and learning with them.

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