Monday, January 7, 2008

Children's Board Games - Are They Boring?

Children's Board Games - Are They Boring?

By Rachel Harding

Children today seem obsessed with technology and while I love gadgets and technology myself, with all the advantages that it can bring. I feel we have lost something when our children only play on computer games.

My 3 children each have a DS Lite and I frequently see them all sitting on their own, playing on their individual games consoles. You see I am as much to blame as everyone else. When I was growing up, and yes that does make me sound old, I remember very little of my childhood which was not related to games, sitting around at Christmas for example with my family playing cards, trivial pursuits, monopoly etc. I believe playing games is the way for children to learn, they develop life skills by participating and interacting with others.

Turn-taking children's games are not only fun to play, they're educational on so many levels, including social and economical.

Kids learn about waiting to take a turn, winning and losing, along with co-operation and economics (with monopoly in mind and handling money), the whole time while they have fun. Games come in and out of fashion, and new games appear, whilst the classics get revamped year after year with new themes and are always popular.

Children's games are made to stretch the child's mind and even the parents sometimes, without frustrating the child and turning him or her off the game, thus making learning enjoyable. Most kids games are also quite fun to play with mum or dad, with family games being designed to be entertaining for both children and adults alike.

If you are looking for something to bring a family together, then you can't go far wrong with any sort of board game. Whilst playing it a family can often get lost inside the game for hours on end.

If you are stuck for what to buy a child as a present then you could do worse than buy a board game. I believe it is one of the best presents you can give, because they bring friends and family together and can provide more hours of fun than any book, DVD, or cd you can find. A board game is a team-building exercise (or team pulling apart exercise if you have been sat around our table on many a heated night) you cannot ignore. It is a way of exercising your mind and social skills are built.

If you sit and examine the rules and the layout of most games, they all have a common feature, you will see they reflect on everyday life. Whether we are playing snap with a game of cards which is teaching us turn taking for example, exercising the mind to keep it alert and helping with learning difficulties, matching numbers and pictures, or trivial pursuits with team building, knowledge learning and strategy development.

Quality educational games are so engaging for most people to play with; children rarely even know they are learning valuable skills, which makes this a fantastic way for them to learn, as information and skills learnt like this, in my opinion, stick in the mind much better than when rules and education is forced.

Today, children's games are well thought out, they are fun and compete well with the lure of the solitary video game, if only we give them the chance.

Rachel Harding is a qualified nurse and mum of 3. She has a great deal of expertise with children and offers valuable support and free resources including stories, forums, recipes, article's, gifts and books at => http://www.yourkidsshop.com

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