[Today we have a guest post from Michelle Habrych: New Game Ideas for Your Homeschool.]
Have you tried a new game lately? We love games in our homeschool and in our family time. I try to incorporate them into our schedule to go along with what we’re studying when possible. I also enjoy them for building critical thinking and logic skills. Here is a previous article I wrote on games: Why Play Games in Your Homeschool. Here are some more great games for you to try!
Qwirkle is designed for ages 6 and up, but don’t let that age fool you. In the game, place tiles of similar colors or shapes to score points, in a manner similar to dominos. This game can challenge your brain, yet it is simple enough for younger children to play.
Card games can add some fun, without being too challenging. Here are some decks worth adding to your collection.
Fluxx and Aquarius are both from Looney Labs. In Fluxx, the rules are always changing, depending on which card you play. There is a lot of reading required in this quick game, but that is the only skill needed (ages 8 and up). There can be some strategy, but not much since one minute you are close to winning and the next, your opponent changes the goal of the game! Aquarius is similar to dominoes (and Qwirkle), in that you are placing cards with matching pictures in an attempt to score seven touching cards of your secret goal before your opponent. Beware, however. Your opponent may play “trade goals” and take yours and, therefore, win! Limited reading is required in Aquarius, which is another quick game for ages 6 and up.
Looney Labs also produces Chrononauts and Early American Chrononauts, two time-travel card games for ages 11 to adult. These are fun to start discussions about history: what happened and what it would be like to change it. These can take a bit longer to play and involve a lot of reading.
Sushi Go! is a fun game for ages 8 and up. It consists of three rounds (or courses in your meal). You need to score the most points through card drafting. Requiring limited reading, Sushi Go! is a great game for older kids who struggle with their reading skills.
Guillotine lets you be the executioner in the French Revolution. Collect Marie Antoinette’s head and earn five points. Beware the Hero of the People, whose head is worth negative three points! This classic game for ages 12 and up involves reading and strategy. It’s a quick play and could be used to enhance your study of this time period. Younger players would not struggle with this if they are able to read, and they may find it very fun, too.
Finally, let me tell you about one of my new favorite board games, The Voyages of Marco Polo. This can be a long and involved game. In it, players take on the persona of one of the people who worked with and around the famous explorer during his travels in the 13th and 14th centuries. Depending on which person you are playing, you will need to adjust your game strategy to collect the most points. The suggested age is 13, but more experienced and younger gamers may be able to play this without a problem. We just taught it to our 15-year-old son and he loves it. Our 13-year-old daughter has not taken the time to learn it yet. This would be a fun one to accompany your studies of explorers, the 13th and 14th centuries, or the Far East.
Take time to game!
Michelle Habrych would do nothing but play games with her family, but then when would the other things get done? Her family schedules regular times to play games together and usually buys new games for Christmas and birthday presents. They enjoy going to the local library for game days, as well as the local game store to try out new games.