MAKE Family Game Night FUN FOR ALL!
Playing games together as a family is a great way to spend time with your kids! In a relaxed, fun setting, you and your kids can be silly, creative, or competitive together. You'll laugh, learn new things about your child's personality, and make lifelong memories.
But first you have to get your kids excited about playing games as a family. If your kids complain that playing games sounds like a dumb idea, don't want to put down their cell phone or get off the computer, or would rather play with their friends, check out our tips for helping your kids get engaged in Family Game Night fun.
Tips for Taking Family Game Night to the Next Level
- Let them Pick!
Let your kids pick the games to play. If siblings fight over which game to play, have each one pick their favorite and take turns playing one round of each game. Draw straws or roll a dice to decide which game is played first!
- Establish an End Time
If your kids are reluctant to participate, ask them to participate for 30 minutes and then they're free to do other things for the rest of the evening. Honoring a time commitment will show your kids that your respect their time, it will help you "get your foot in the door," and who knows - maybe they'll have so much fun they'll want to keep playing!
- Have Prizes
Designate a prize for the winner of the game. Let them pick a flavor of ice cream at the grocery store for the family to enjoy, or put small toys in a box or treasure chest to pick a prize. (Image courtesy Oriental Trading Company, where you can purchase a treasure chest of prizes for game night!)
- Invite Friends
Encourage your kids to invite a friend to join you for family game night. This is a great opportunity to get to know your children's friends and possibly have a positive impact in another child's life who may not have a great dad.
- Eat Fun & Healthy Snacks
Pop some popcorn or put out a plate of healthy snacks like baby carrots and apple slices. Use candy as prizes during the game, or just munch on goodies throughout the night. Your kids will be extra excited about game night if means getting to enjoy special treats that they normally can't have during the week.
- Make it Silly!
Don't be afraid to go out on a limb, be a little crazy, and make up your own silly rules for games! Perhaps the person who's in the lead has to wear a funny hat, or during a round of "Go Fish" everyone has to ask their opponents for a card in a sing-song voice or fake accent. Young children will especially get a kick out of silliness.
- Hold a Tournament
Make Game Night extra fun by having a tournament of Scrabble, Scattagories, Go Fish, Uno, or any other game your family enjoys. Create a bracket, establish official tournament rules, have a ceremony to recognize the champion, and offer consolation prizes to other players. Invite another family to join you to increase the fun!
Need More Tips for Getting Started?
If you're not sure what games to play with your family, check out the Let the Games Begin: Get Your Game Face On for Family Game Night Fun! campaign webpage for tips and suggestions from NFI Staff and our community of moms and dads on Facebook and Twitter!