We got many board games gifted during this birthday.
My first response was "yay! what fun. Now we all can play happily for ever".
The kids were intrigued, eager and what not and were begging to play games like chess and other non understandable games instead of the simple ludo, snake ladder.
Well I complied and notice how the focus shifts to "I". No one else (read The Husband) is really willing to break head over board games.
I would have backed out too but their is a larger plan here. The faster they learn to play, the faster they learn to occupy themselves with the games keeping each other busy.
So here's the status so far.
Tic - Tac - Toe
A nice large board with noughts and crosses in plastic.
They can honestly beat me in the game provided they are using the cross and provided I am being a little dumb. Tejas can play the game for as long as I can ask him to but Ojas plays only until he has conquered it. I find it is quite a simple and easy game to engage kids and it ends fast so no boredom here.
Click here for a mathematical tic tac toe with an extremely dumb computer who doesn't make a line even when the opportunity is presented. and anothe rone in which you can configure the number of squares in the board
Snake & Ladder
They do have some idea of the game- up the ladder, down the snake they keep reciting but they love getting bitten by the snake and climb down the ladder after climbing them. Naturally, we live on ground floor so that is years of training to come down if they ever go climbing up the staircase.
They love to cheat- place the dice in such a way that they can climb the ladder if they so wish.
and sometimes they play with their individual dice- simultaneously, like a race.
If they would stop placing the dice on 6, they could atleast play. They are more focused on getting a 6 and taking all the pieces out rather than actually playing. We will get there I am sure.
A friend used to have this wooden board with perforations for pinning the pieces on the board. I used to love that. It was more satisfying to pin the pieces as we jump across rather than the flimsy plastic ones that are provided now. We have just started playing with not much of success. But then, it is only 16 days since we got the board.
Click here for an addictive chinese checker
This is the most challenging one more because I am quite basic in my understanding of the game.
I found this neat site that explains most of the theory and have good game examples for a person who is looking at just basic understanding.
What I am doing with the kids is explaining what each piece does and how each piece moves. Which are the 4 most important squares - and why they are in the centre- very much like their playground which is in the centre of the building. I have explained that the objective is to reach the other person's house as quickly as possible and if anyone is coming to their house they have to catch them. We have named the pieces and discussed how each piece moves and where each piece sits.
Yesterday we played a game with only pawns and we gained pieces as the pawns reached the other side.
I do not know how much they are going to understand but I am just fuelling the interest that was shown. If necessary coaches can teach but for now, I am not making it regimental.
I love word games. But scrabble is one game I have never played when I was younger. So anyway, I took this lovely scrabble for kids out for inaugaration and I found it had two sides- one with pre made grid and one has to just make the words as per the grid. The reverse side is a normal scrabble. We started fine but as soon as I got up to do something else, the kids had emptied the rack and filled up all the tiles and completed the grid. We turned the board and did the regular scrabble making words with kids selecting the tiles from the rack as per what words they wished to make. Well, House Rules!