Why bring games into the classroom?
Games provide an alternative avenue to learning a variety of life skills. From spelling and mathematics to strategizing and compromise, every game provides a fun opportunity to learn and grow. Games can come in a variety of forms and can be adapted to meet the needs of your class. They bring an atmosphere of fun and community as well. You can stock up on them for yourself or give them as gifts to students and they can bring the fun home with them.
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This game is an off-spin of the classic game of scrabble. Similar to Scrabble it challenges students to produce words and add up points to see who wins. This game however, does not come with a board instead it is a free flowing game able to play anywhere. (First grade and up)
2. Monopoly Builder
This twist on the classic Monopoly is sure to bring in a new added level of fun to the widely loved game. Monopoly builder allows for students to practice financial responsibility, negotiation, and strategization as they work to buy land, trade resources and build the biggest tower. (
Headbandz is a classic in the classroom that can be easily adapted to become any lesson you would like it to be. This game challenges students to think outside the box as they work to describe the item on the card using words other than the one on the card. Adapt it to bring in mathematics, phonics, social science, or science and provide your students with a fun engaging learning opportunity. (Kindergarten and up)
4. Ticket to Ride
Ticket to ride is heavy on strategy. The goal of this game is to produce a train the meets the objective on your card while watching out for your opponents. It brings in geography as students are building trains from city to city, state to state. With the expansion packs you also have the opportunity to learn about other countries. (Fourth Grade and up)
Catan is a game of strategization. Students are challenged to build the biggest plot using the resources they need to gain. They can practice the art of negotiation, and build community as they play either of these options. ( Catan Fifth Grade and up) (Catan Jr. First and up)
The classic game of words combines spelling and mathematics to challenge the students to achieve the highest number of points using vocabulary they have learned. Scrabble junior provides an opportunity to grow with the learners. Starting with letter recognization and building and growing into a blank board with endless opportunities on the back. (Scrabble, Third grade and up). (Scrabble Jr. First grade and up)
Monopoly, the game of money. Students work to build the biggest empire, and learn finances, strategization and negotiation in the process. Monopoly junior provides the opportunity to bring it to younger classrooms with simpler and faster gameplay. (Monopoly Jr, first grade and up) (Monopoly, fourth grade and up)
The game of physics. Students take turns pulling blocks, strategizing to not let the tower topple over. Add an extra level of learning by adding questions to your blocks. Whether it be phonics, vocabulary, mathematics, science, or social students the opportunities are endless. (Kindergarten and up)
9. Battle Ship
Battle ship is a game of strategy. Challenge your students to guess their opponents ships to try and sink them. This game focuses students to take time, slow down, and think ahead and they use their previous shots to guide their future ones. (Second grade and up)
10. Guess Who
Guess who is a game of categorizing and questions to decipher the other players focus person. You can make it your own by switching out the pictures and adding phonics, math, science, or social studies pictures instead of the people, just make sure each side has the same items in different places. (Kindergarten and up)
Challenge your students memorization skills with this classic game. This game can be used as is or you can make your own using papers, cardstock, etc. Expand into the ideas of math, phonics, science and social studies with a little bit of work and creativity. (Kindergarten and up)
Puzzles are a simple way to teach patience and problem solving. They are known to support memory as students search for specific pieces and allows for students to be creative independently or as a team with others. (All ages depending on size of puzzle.)
Roll and add. This simple five dice game is great for working on adding skills for your students. As the roll the dice they search for patters and add up their points working with strategy and mathematics all at the same time. Simplify the game and create your own work sheets for younger students to allow for all to enjoy this simple game. (Second grade and up, can simplify for Kindergarten and First)
Boggle is a game of words. Similar to a word search students shake dice with letters in it and try to find the words hiding inside. The bigger the boggle the more letters thus making it easier for little thinkers. (First grade and up)
15. Connect Four
This classic game teaches strategy, patience, and good sportsmanship. In this game students are challenged to think steps ahead to place their pieces in such a way to attain a connect for. Its simple, easy and fun for every age. (Kindergarten and up.)
One of my personal favorite games as a kid was definitely Mancala. The simplicity of moving little marbles across a board and trying to get more into your own home was one of the most rewarding feelings. This is a game that teaches patience, strategy, and sportsmanship as students challenge each other to a game of Mancala. (First grade and up)