But like many things we do, throwing this kind of activity in every now and then helps ground us. The kids love to play board games, and we have a ton! This is such an easy thing to do on a whim, and still make it seem like a big deal.
Of course, only half of them actually have all of the pieces since they like to pull them out when they’re not actually playing them, and drag the pieces all over the house. There are enough choices to make it fun though.
7 tips for family game night
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Before I get to the goods, here are the games we played on this particular game night! There are so many more cool games, but these work for most ages, so we can all play them together.
- Put away the electronics. This is as much for the adults, as it is the kids. It’s easy for me to get sucked into checking emails, scanning my facebook feed, or responding to texts if I don’t make the decision to put my phone in another room during family game night.
- Set out snacks. I literally grabbed stuff from our cabinets, and put them in bowls to make them look special. I took me a couple of seconds, and the kids loved it! I think they feel like they’re at a party!
- Find a few games that work for all of the ages in your party. This can be tricky if you have a wide range of ages, but those games do exist, and if you can’t find any that seem appropriate for your youngest, without boring your oldest, you can always partner up the littles with parents or older siblings that can offer help.
- Talk about the rules of game night before you start playing. We happen to be a bit competitive in our family. Ok, maybe a lot competitive. The other day, Brent and I were cooking, and that turned into a competition.One of my kids, can literally turn how long his toenails are into a competition. (He’s done it before). I know that’s how we are, and so I make it a point to discuss a few rules before we start. Big kids are not allowed to heckle the little kids (or vice versa). They are joking, and trying to be silly, but the little ones can’t handle it and tears happen. Big kids are to cut the littles, a little slack. Little kids aren’t allowed to lose their minds if they lose, or something doesn’t go the way they planned it.That might seem harsh, but I have no interest in watching my youngest children act like we are torturing them during an activity that’s meant to be fun. Typically, when we talk about the rules in advance, all it takes is a quick reminder to calm them down when they start to get upset. I don’t expect them not to be bothered at all the entire time, I just don’t want to see the tantrums. That’s not fun for anyone.
- Make a basket to draw games from. We learned this the hard way. Everyone wants to play something first. Cutting up a couple of pieces of paper, adding the names of your games, and throwing them into the basket to draw from is super easy, and eliminates the fights about who gets to pick the game.Or am I the only one whose kids will find a reason to bicker no matter what we are doing?? Or cry because their game wasn’t chosen? So much easier to rely on luck of the draw than majority rules, in this case! Case and point (we didn’t draw games on this day) –>
- Alternate games that require sitting with games that require more movement. This will help your bouncy ones sit better during the quieter games.
- HAVE FUN!
Family game night is one of the quickest and easiest ways to set some time apart for your family. We all get busy, and overwhelmed. Sometimes, all it takes is planning a game night here and there to remind you to stop, and enjoy your family.
What does your family like to do together?