Fun family games aren’t hard to come by, but Peaceable Kingdom focuses on this new concept called Cooperative Games. This has kicked Family Game Night up quite a few notches. Instead of a game turning into an all out competitive battle, their games focus on team work, compassion, communication and so much more. This isn’t a collection of games that “Gives Everyone and Award” type mentality. The object is always reaching a common goal together, instead of battling against one another.
I first heard about these through a friend of mine. She had purchased Race to the Treasure from a little toy store in North Seattle. She and her grand-kids loved it so much, she went back to see if they had any more. Sadly, they did not, but that’s the beauty of Amazon! She was able to order another game, Hoot Owl Hoot, and have the magical 2 day Prime shipping deliver it to her door quickly.
Race to the Treasure
I decided to give Race to the Treasure a whirl. I LOVED it and so did the kids. You learn strategy, cooperation, shared decision making, math and grid concepts and a lot more. You race an Ogre to the treasure by drawing cards with either a piece to a path or an ogre. You decide as a team which way your path will go to get to the treasure, picking up 3 of the 4 keys to the treasure along the way. You draw a path card and continue building your path. You draw an Ogre card and place it on his linear path. It’s pretty cut and dry. There is also an Ogre Snack that you can obtain, which negates one of the ogre cards on the board. Get to the treasure before the Ogre and it’s a Celebration!
If you don’t make it to the treasure before the Ogre, it’s not a big deal. Simply start over. Hours of game play aren’t lost, feelings aren’t hurt and your competitive nature to beat that Ogre together, makes you want to do it again. It’s fun, super simple, short and sweet and you can play over and over again.
I have since bought 2 more games and have 2 more on the way. We got Lucky Dogs, a really fun dice game that teaches strategy, communication and team building. Spell out the words “LUCKY DOGS” before you run out of die and you win! This one is my personal favorite so far. I actually have been asking the kids to play with me. Of course they are more than willing to!
You roll the die and match it to a dog bone. If you have no match, you place a dice on the cardboard doghouse in the middle. You can play on 4 different bones at a time. Once a bone is filled up, you disperse the die and follow the direction on the bone. You either put a dice in the dog house or take one out of the dog house. Then, flip over the bone to reveal either a letter or the word DOG. Once again, super simple and not a million hours long. Seriously, get this game.
Friends and Neighbors
Our most recent purchase is a game called Friends and Neighbors. This game is one that anyone with a child 3 or over should have. This is a matching game that focuses on feelings. It engages the empathetic side of your child and encourages compassion and cooperation.
Pick 1 of the 4 game boards and as you take a stroll through the neighborhood, you pull a token out of a bag and match it to a coordinating picture on the board. If you can’t match it, your token goes red side up on a cardboard stop sign. Fill up the game board and you win! Fill up the stop sign and you put all the tokens back into the bag, pick another board and start over. We started over 5 times before filling up a game board. There is also a little booklet that serves as a parental guide for this game. It’s a wonderful bridge to talking about the feelings of those around us and how we can help others.
I will add to this after our next 2 games Dinosaur Escape and The Fairy Game get here. We are really excited to play them! I foresee a lot more of their games arriving in the future. I encourage you to give one of more of the Peaceable Kingdom games a try. I guarantee you and your family will love them. Make sure to let me know what you think and leave a comment below!
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