homemade board games - momgineer

Thursday, February 17, 2011

homemade board games


The games we make ourselves always get far more play than ones that were purchased. The best example I have is The Rainbow Game. After what felt like 2000 games of Chutes and Ladders, I decided we needed a game that would move faster. Much, much faster. I grabbed some foam paper and stickers, a hole punch, and string, and The Rainbow Game was born!

Basically, I strung together several sheets of foam paper and then had the kids pick out foam stickers to make a path from start to finish, and added in "special" stickers that carried meaning. If you land on a dinosaur spot, you get to move ahead 10 spaces. Wow! If you land on a red circle, you lose a turn (I know it isn't promoting the faster aspect, but at least you aren't sliding down a big slide from 87 to 24). If you land on a heart, you get to go again. Want the game to go really fast? Let them play with as many dice as they'd like. H likes to play with anywhere from 2 to 7 dice; adding up all the numbers is part of the fun for him. The playing pieces are anything small enough to fit on the "board" but we are everything from farm animals to dinosaurs to hex nuts to wooden cubes. =)

If you don't have foam paper and stickers, a piece of cardboard and glued-on shapes you've cut out will work as well. You can even make your own die/dice!


On the purple rectangle you can choose your own path to try to either land on the dinosaur or hearts. This encourages thinking ahead/planning:

Feel free to get creative or turn it into a more collaborative (or at least less competitive) game by saying you all advance to the last rectangle but wait until everyone gets there before proceeding to the end, and then you all move together. We *love* the Richard Scarry Busy Town game and that is how the game ends - with everyone winning, or losing, together.
momgineer Meredith Anderson

STEM education is my passion!

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