Another day, another playground. That’s summer in a nutshell, and we can’t complain — but sometimes it’s nice to head inside and chill (and by that we mean soak up the air conditioning). While you’re at it, gather the family and play a game. These five new finds are good for bonding, team building and non-stop giggles.
Frida’s Fruit Fiesta Game
A toucan teaches kids the ABCs in this newbie from the makers of the popular Sneaky Snacky Squirrel. Open the box to find a mini rainforest world in which you help Frida the toucan find lunch (in the form of alphabet letters) for her young ones. Players use three spinners at once and choose which move to make for the biggest impact — first one to set up four letters in a row wins! For ages 4 & up. $24.99 at marblesthebrainstore.com.
If you kiddo always has a pencil or crayon in hand, this game will win him over. It plunges you into a deep-sea quest, encountering sea dragons, submarines and sharks. The goal: Draw you way from one adventure to the next. Using transparent paper, dry erase pens, stencils and a focused mind, you draw your way around obstacles in a race against other players. For ages 6 & up. $24.95 at fatbraintoys.com.
Sunny Day Pond Cooperative Board Game
Cooperative games are the latest crazes in family fun, and with good reason: They encourage players to work together toward a common goal, instead of compete with each other. This new diversion from Peaceable Kingdom challenges players to build three puzzles before the rain comes (i.e.: the spinner lands on a raindrop picture). This is a great game for learning color matching and fine-tuning motor skills. For ages 3 & up. $16.09 at amazon.com.
Hope you have a big appetite for fun. This card game has been around 20 years, but it’s now re-released in super-sized packaging. Flip a giant “loaf” of cards to build a sandwich; whoever tops it off and slaps the deck first wins the pile. The goal is to get all the cards — at which point you’ll probably be drooling for real-life lunch. For ages 6 & up. $15.99 at gamewright.com.
Bananagrams Wild Tiles
This is one banana your kids will beg to peel open, over and over again. Inside the fruit-y packaging, you’ll find an all-new spin on the original Bananagrams racing crossword game. With Bananagrams WildTiles, there’s a new spin: Players speed along to complete their grids, and can pick up a “WildTile” and play it as many times as needed, standing in for any letter. We’re going ape for the portability factor. For ages 7 & up. $14.95 at Target stores starting on August 3, 2014. More info online at bananagramsgowild.com.
What is your favorite game for family game night? Let us know in the Comments!
— Kelly Aiglon