Put those video games on pause and your computers to sleep this Holiday Season and get ready for some good old-fashioned fun. Board games are a great way for families to get together, compete, laugh and have fun all while sneaking in valuable skill building time for the kids.
There are so many great classics (Sorry!, Battleship, Mastermind, Checkers, Monopoly, Clue, Boggle) that develop essential cognitive skills such as strategic thinking and planing, problem solving, cooperation, deductive reasoning, spelling, vocabulary, word and pattern recognition as well as “out of the box” thinking.
Here are five great games that, not only promote cognitive skill development, but enhance fine motor and perceptual skills as well.
Spot It (ages 7+) and Spot It Jr. (ages 4+)
Between any two cards there is always one and only one matching symbol. Spot it fast to win!
Develops: focus, visual perception skills, speech-language skills, and fine motor skills
Sketch It (ages 10+)
Players race to finish drawings, and then guess what the other players illustrated.
Develops: fine motor skills, spatial relationships, visual motor skills, visualization
Zitternix (ages 6+)
Take turns tossing the colorful die to find out which color stick to pull out of the ring but don’t be the one to make it fall!
Develops: perceptual motor skills, fine motor skills, matching and counting
Thin Ice (ages 5+)
Use oversized tweezers to place a wet marble on the “ice” but don’t be the player that makes all of the marbles fall through the ice!
Develops: fine motor skills and strategy
Simon (ages 5+)
Follow ever-increasing sequence of flashing lights and sounds to build the longest sequence you can
Develops: sequential and short term memory, eye-hand-auditory coordination, concentration and focus