Years ago, Friday night became family game night at our house. Laughing, sharing, and building memories.
Here are the best games for families and family game night. Our family’s all-time favorites.
Send this list to the grandparents if they are looking for gift ideas!
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The games below recommended are listed from youngest to oldest!
Snail’s Pace Race – this was our family’s very first board game! A beautiful cooperative game from Ravensburger with wooden snail pieces and die with colored dots. It’s hard to find games for young children and this one’s a gem. Ages 3+
Kapla Blocks – natural, unfinished wooden planks that can be built into just about anything. Don’t underestimate this simple set of blocks. They can build amazing, elaborate structures. Great for solitary play as well as cooperative building. My teenagers each wanted their own set! Ages 3+
Bananagrams – a word game where players race each other to build crossword grids. Small and compact, great for family game night and also to take with you on the go. My 18-year-old daughter still plays this game with her college friends!
Mancala – an ancient strategy game for two players. Great to play when studying Ancient Civilizations. Ages 7+
Rummikub – our #1 top family favorite. We were introduced to this game by my husband’s Aunt Shirley years ago. And it’s still a go-to favorite on Friday nights.
Labyrinth – a race for treasures through a moving maze. One of my daughter’s favorites. Ages 8+
You’ve Been Sentenced! – create silly sentences that are hilarious. Ages 8+
Borderline Card Game – the best geography card game. Comes in USA version, World, and Africa. Learning is happening while having fun. Ages 8+
Apples to Apples Junior – a game of crazy comparisons, full of laughter and so much mixed-age fun. Ages 9+
You can also get the original Apples to Apples for the pre-teen and teen crowd. Great for holiday gatherings too. Ages 12+
Looking for more ideas? Find additional Gift Guides & Book Lists for Simple Natural Families here.
Because of my ADHD I have not been able to do this with my children which makes me feel really bad because they love board games.
Yes, that can pose challenges to playing games for sure, Sara. I will say that one of my children is in that category, and we still found ways. The Kapla Blocks on the list were fabulous for all three of my children, including (and especially for) the one with attention challenges. So don’t give up on the idea entirely!
I’m realizing we have so many Nickie plastic toys that they don’t even play with I’m going through today I’m going o get rid of them and make room for games!!
We had celebrated a birthday and ended up playing bingo with extended family and everyone had a great time!!
Christmas is around the corner and I like to buy quality toys like wood for boys 4 and five any ideas would be great!!
Yes Monica, great idea to begin clearing out now for some wonderful new playthings at the holidays. isn’t it fun to play games at extended family gatherings!?! Such a good all-generations activity. My top choice for a good toy for 4 & 5 year old boys is either a wooden castle with figures, or a wooden barn and farm animals. Check out the company, Melissa & Doug. I am panning on putting together a Children’s Toys Gift Guide soon, so keep your eye out.
We love family game night too! I love seeing some of our favorites on your list!
So glad to hear that some of these are your favorites too, Nicola!
Love this! Orchard by haba is also a lovely cooperative game for little ones (3+) :).
Thanks, Ines! Great suggestion on the Orchard game. It’s not easy to find good games for young children so I appreciate your suggestion!