The Activity – Create a Board Game
Are you looking for a fun indoor family activity? If it’s too cold outside or you’re looking for relief from the heat, your kids will love creating a board game. You may be thinking, why would we make our own board game when we have plenty of games in the closet?
This activity is all about letting your kids be creative. They will take pride in using a few supplies to create a fun game the whole family can enjoy. Your kids will learn how to take their idea, break it down into actionable steps and create a physical game.
My seven year old followed these steps and made a game he is so proud of. He needed a little guidance and direction, but for the most part, this game is his own creation.
Kids have a tendency to default to their screens. Instead of spending time inside on a device, give your kids the opportunity to be creative. Allow your kids the satisfaction of starting with an idea and seeing it through to an end product.
If you’re looking for fun outdoor family activities, check out my post titled 50 Family Activities to Close Out Summer.
The How – 4 steps to a Fun Indoor Family Activity
Have your kids follow these 4 steps to go from an idea to a board game you can use for a fun indoor family activity.
Step 1: Be Creative and Come up with a Plan
Start with a piece of paper to write down all of your thoughts and ideas. You will want to think about and answer questions like
- Will each person be an individual player or will there be teams?
- How will each player move move along the board – (example: rolling dice or drawing from a pile of cards)
- What will happen during the game?
- Will the characters need to complete a special mission?
- What is the goal of the game?
- What are the rules of the game?
Think about games you’ve played before to get inspiration. Write down everything about the game and draw a sketch of what you want your game board to look like. Once you’ve got a good plan, move on to the next step.
Step 2: Make a List and Gather Supplies
Look at your plan and come up with the supplies necessary to make your board game.
For most board games you will need these minimum supplies:
- Board – The board game you create can be any size. We recommend not going any smaller than an regular 8 1/2 x 11 piece of paper. Try a poster board, cardboard from a large box or tape a couple pieces of paper together.
- Game Pieces – You can use game pieces from other games, make your own out of paper, clay or any other type of material, or find objects around the house.
Once you have all of your supplies you one step closer to your fun indoor family activity.
Step 3: Build your Board Game
Once you have your supplies, start building the game. Use color and be as neat as possible. Do you best work. Follow your plan, but know that you can always make improvements and changes during the building step.
Here’s my son working on his board game. He had such a fun time. Some of his ideas were not really possible to work into a board game.
Feel proud of what you’ve created. It may not turn out exactly as you expected, but be proud of your hard work. Now that your board game idea has turned to an actual physical board game, call your family members and let them know it’s time for a fun indoor family activity.
Step 4: Play the Game
All of your hard work planning, preparing and building is complete. It’s time to play your game. Have a great time and enjoy this fun indoor family activity.
The Support – Let Your Kids Own Their Project
Creating your own board game can be fun in and of itself. I remember my son was asked to come up with a game to play in an activity group. He decided to make his own board game. He was about 10 years old and wanted to do everything himself.
His final product wasn’t something ready to be mass produced and sold in stores. But, his final product was 100% original and 100% his own creation. Some of the squares around the board were too small. Some of the handwriting on the cards wasn’t legible. But that was totally ok. My boys played that game over and over again. They adapted as needed and made it work. Counting two squares as one space when they couldn’t fit their playing piece in a square. Making up different situations when they couldn’t read the handwriting. They made it their own and had a fun indoor family activity they could play over and over again.
My son so proud of what he had created and had a really fun time making his game. There were times I wanted to step in and make a suggestion. I cringed when I saw him cutting outside of the lines in order to quickly move on to the next step. It was harder than I expected to let go of what I expected the game to look like and let him make it by himself. Resist the urge to step in and help – unless you are asked.
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