Family Matters  |  Leana Matodes

Board Games With A Purpose

"We didn't realise we were making memories, we just knew we were having fun!"

Who doesn’t want to have fun with their children, laugh out loud, build relationship, but learn a few things at the same time ?

Families are busy and our days are filled with so much input from the world (busy schedules, homework, noises, people, expectations, activities, sights, sensory overload etc etc) that it takes a conscious decision to make some time for games and schedule it in our week!  (Check out: Benefits of the Week Chart on our Blog Page).

Christmas is drawing near and sure all of us can use a little inspiration to find some gifts that will entertain our little people for more than a few days.

Games can serve so many purposes and depending on your goals, you can adjust each game to suit the specific outcome you are after or adjust the game for each age group!

Top suggestions and ideas:

  • Start with games that are not time consuming (For example: Uno or Monopoly), easy to understand, can be played in a few minutes and be repeated as many times as needed.
  • Look for games with tokens that can be "earned" so that the focus stays on the end result... playing that game together!
  • Earning tokens:

Speech sound practise receiving a token in their hands after each picture you practise together or name;

Picnic sessions receiving a token for each lick, little bite, sniff, describe or touch a new food you are playing with or trying for the first time;

Social skills practice receive a token for waiting your turn, staying on the chair seated at the table;

Language skills practice receive a token for each picture you described accurately or a question answered etc;

Spelling receiving a token for each word sounded out correctly or written accurately.

All of the above goals integrated first and foremost during “real play” situations to provide them with rich experiences to understand and then use the above skills, but Board Games great for supporting carry over of goals or for when we need more focused practise or have semi-structured goals.

  • Look for games with a fun and anticipatory response and end-result !
  • Great tip: Use a white board or sheet of paper to draw out the sequence of the game so that all understand the rules, the format of the game as well as what will happen at the end. Preparation around losing important for some of our little people and what our choices are should we not like losing. For example: Can we try again? or Can we cry? or Can we give the winner a high five?

Some of our favourite games

Below is a list of some games that are our favourite. Click on each one for purchase links (at the time of this post). Alternatively, eBay is a good place to search:


Let us know if you purchased any of the games and snap a pic of you playing with your family and share on our facebook page.

Any questions, feedback or comments? We would love to hear from you and add to our list!



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