When we talk about incorporating games into your homeschooling, many folks automatically assume that we are only talking about early elementary school. It is easy to think of games that teach colors and shapes or other basic concepts. I will mention a few of those games today, but I also want to think about games that can be beneficial for our older students.
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One of our favorite types of game to play as a family is history related games. My husband loves history and will often join us for those types of games. My children have been really enjoying American History Timeline. You are dealt cards with various events from American history and each time you have a turn you have to place one of those spots in the correct place on the timeline of cards. Once you have placed the card, it is turned over to reveal the date. If it is correct, the game continues to the next player. If the card is in the wrong spot the player puts the card at the bottom of the deck and draws another card. The first player to successfully place all of their cards wins. We also really enjoy the history games from Home School in the Woods. She has a variety of file folder games that you can print and play focused on various time periods and historical locations. They are a great way to add a little fun to your studies.
In addition to history, there are several options to use games to work on geography. My children received Ticket to Ride for Christmas and have really enjoyed playing it. As they make connections and complete routes, they become more familiar with the United States and various major cities across the map. They also have a variety of other boards and expansion packs, so you could have maps of Europe and other locations. I certainly wouldn’t use it as my only geography study but it is a fun way to help cement knowledge or peak interest. Scrambled States of America is another great one that is even more directly educational while still being lots of fun. In this game you learn about the fifty states, their capitals, mottos, and other interesting information about each state. If you like computer based games, Stack the States is a lot of fun.
There are a variety of opportunities for math games to add in a little fun. Some games such as Telling Time Bingo and Frog Pond Fractions were created with the express purpose of teaching math skills. While others are a bit more subtle in their math lessons. For example, Yahtzee and Monopoly both require players to use various math skills as they complete the game. My children also enjoy Life on the Farm and Act Your Wage, and I find both of those games to be more enjoyable than Monopoly and not quite so lengthy. When I asked about games on my Facebook page last week someone also mentioned, Smath which is like scrabble for math. I have not yet tried it, but I have added it to my wish list. You can also check out my post on using card games to help with math concepts.
In addition to academic subjects, I think games can be a great way to work on character traits as well as critical thinking. Games such as Clue and Guess Who? can be fun ways to work on those critical thinking skills. There are also a variety of cooperative games that are available. In these games children are working together to achieve the goal instead of competing. I find that these can be helpful with siblings who might be struggling with attitudes towards each other. We particularly like Wildcraft as a family and my five-year-old son enjoys Count Your Chickens.
For the preschool crowd, there are dozens of wonderful options for teaching cooperation, colors, shapes, letter, and beginning math concepts. I could write an entire post on the options but I will just share a few of our favorites with you today. When my older two children were preschool age, Leap Frog had a Letter Factory game. They spent hours playing that game and learning their letters. A favorite that has been around since I was a little girl is High-Ho Cherry-o. I also highly recommend pattern blocks, even though they may be considered more of a toy than a game.
There are so many ways to add fun into your homeschool day through games. I would love for you to share your family’s favorite games in the comments and tell me how you incorporate games into your homeschool days. Don’t forget to check out all of the other great blog hop posts today!
CREW @ Homeschool Review Crew – 2019 Annual Not Back to School Homeschool Blog Hop
Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses – ABC of Homeschooling
Dawn @ Schoolin’ Swag – Adding Fun to Your Homeschool Day
Erin @ For Him and My Family – Large Family Homeschooling
Lori @ At Home Where Life Happens – Learning Life Skills
Monique @ Mountain of Grace Homeschooling – Homeschooling the High School Years
Monique D. @ Early Learning Mom – Homeschooling With Autism
Yvie @ Homeschool On the Range – 5 Days of Upper Grades Homeschooling
Abby @ Making Room 4 One More – Time Management for Homeschool Moms
Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool – 5 Days of Homeschool Questions
Amy @ the WRITE Balance – Year-Round Schooling
Annette @ A Net in Time – Homeschooling.
Betty @ Lets Get Real – Homeschooling High School
Yvonne @ The Life We Build – 5 Days of Relaxed Homeschooling
Destiny @ Some Call It Destiny – Encouragement for the Homeschooling Mom
Karen @ Tots and Me…Growing Up Together – A Peek into Our Homeschool
Cassie D @ Deputie Tribe – Homeschooling 6 Taking Care of YOU
Kristen Heider @ A Mom’s Quest to Teach –Theme: A Quest for a Great Homeschool Year
Patti Pierce – Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy – My Favorite Homeschooling Things
Wendy @ Life on Chickadee Lane – 5 Days of Nature Study
Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning – Homeschooling my final 4
Christine @ Life’s Special Necessities – Yes! You Can Homeschool Your Special Needs Child
Sally M – Tell the Next Generation – Tips for Homeschooling Struggling Learners
Kim @ Good Sweet Love – Last Year of Elementary
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Deals and Freebies
SchoolhouseTeachers.com is doing an amazing sale this month! Buy One year get One Year FREE! We use this for several of our courses and one price covers all the students in your home for as many of their over 400 courses and you would like to use.
If you missed the sale last month, Tuttle Twins is doing a 50% off sale in honor of back to school! Simply use the code: SCHOOL
Free Makeover Your Morning 5 Day Challenge! This is a great way to help re-focus and get your day off on the right foot.
Harry The Happy Mouse (Free on Kindle)
Illustrated Would You Rather Book (Free on Kindle)
Enrichment Studies has a great free fine arts memory match game this month!
Free Help Your Child’s Memory Book from All About Learning Press!