Experts say board games can boost a slew of skills that help kids do better in school. And playing them as a family just ups the benefits—and the fun factor.
Games are great for kids for different reasons at different ages. For preschoolers, they’re a fun way to learn how to “follow rules, focus, take turns and defer gratification, which helps with self-regulation, the basis of problem-solving and thinking creatively,” explains Peter J. Pizzolongo, the senior director of professional development at the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Board games also get bonus points for bringing families together (especially if family dinners are rare) and for luring kids away from addictive video games. And all kids get lessons in decision-making (“Should I buy Boardwalk or save my money?”), consequences (“Ooops—no more cash!”) and strategic thinking (“If I swap two railroads for Boardwalk, I can start buying houses”).” For ideas on what to play, read on for the games that get the highest marks from experts.
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