The Benefits

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Time Bonding

Happy FamilyThe number one benefit of a Family Game Night in my opinion is the time you spend bonding with your family. Whatever frequency you choose, it is still time well spent with you & your children. It may not always seem like it at the time, but your kids will truly appreciate every moment of it.

A Family Game Night can be a vital parenting tool if you allow it to be. Kids are always seeking our time as parents and they can have bad timing with that a lot too. Giving your kids a scheduled event that they can look forward to on a regular basis will help your relationship with them tremendously. Aside from bonding during these times, there are also many other benefits to be had.

Laughs

LaughsOne of the best things about getting together with whomever and playing a game in person is the laughs you have at the table. Sometimes the game cannot even be the focal point, but rather the reason for just being with each other. We are social creatures and a Family Game Night gives us the opportunity that we instinctively look for.

Just looking back now I can easily think of gads of moments where hilarity ensued. No matter the game, there are always laughs to be had when you get together and play. Some games can quickly encourage this while others may be more serious, but even during those games you will find the time to laugh and enjoy yourself.

Don’t feel bad if having a good time starts to trump the actual game. However you will want to make sure that no one is getting upset because focus on the game is lost. Make sure that you have your fun, and get back to the game!

Communication Skills

Communication SkillsOne very valuable skill that a Family Game Night will help grow is your ability to communicate better. Not only will this be a tremendous asset for your children, but could also be a valuable benefit for you as well.

Virtually every game you can play will in one way or another help a person with their communication skills. Whether it is how to communicate on a team or how to communicate with an opponent, most games will have you talking with each other one way or another. All of this talking equals communication and the more you do that the better your skill in it will be.

I recommend that early on in the process of establishing your Family Game Night that you try to focus on games where communication with others is a vital key to the game. This will allow you to get those skills developing early and allow them to be a foundation to build upon.

Problem Solving Skills

Problem Solving SkillsOne way of looking at games is that they propose a problem to the player and the player needs to solve it. While it may not always be clear to that degree, one way or another they basically are.

From the simplest & earliest games your family will be learning how to overcome problems to win the game. There are strategies to learn in every game and as you learn them you will find that you can also bring those same skills into other areas of your life.

This again can be something that certain games focus on and I also recommend that you find a game that works for your family in this area early on. There are many games even at the most basic of levels that can achieve this.

Social Skills

Social SkillsIn today’s world people are now more connected with each other then in recorded history. That means having a solid social skill set with be a valuable tool not only for your children, but also yourself.

The act of gathering for a Family Game Night in itself starts the process for learning social skills. These skills will carry forward into school and or work and help your family to better interact with others. I think that all too often problems in our society arise from the lack of socially interacting with each other in positive ways.

In the end, outside of the family bond, this to me can be one of the best ways to help your children. Having social skills to help them to grow up and interact better with their generation can only lead to good things.

Intelligence

IntelligenceEach game you play brings with it various ways of helping everyone learn a little bit. Many games will require math & reading to play and every bit of practice in those skills helps make us a bit smarter. You can even take this a step further and get games specifically for this purpose as well.

From counting spaces to move, to keeping score, and much more, math is everywhere in games. I encourage you to let the kids keep score, as that can be a great introduction to helping them with their math skills. Many times if your child s struggling with math you can find a game that just might require the same skills and play it to help!

When you combines all the skills that gaming can help build along with the fundamental skills, you are giving your children a great head start to life. Take note as a parent and pay attention to how your children grow over time with each and every Family Game Night.

Structure

Between having a scheduled night and process in which you have for your Family Game Night, your family will learn a lot about structure. There are many different traits that will come over time.

Traits:Team Work

· Organization
· Scheduling
· Taking Turns
· Teamwork
· Strategy
· Respect
· And much, much more!

This is yet just another great benefit of having a Family Game Night. All of these traits, plus the many more I did not mention, will help everyone in your family be much more productive in life.

Keeping Kids Out of Trouble

An often-overlooked aspect of gaming is how it can help your kids stay out of trouble. By having a Family Game Night you are giving your kids a positive outlet for their energy.

Firstly, Just the fact that you are spending time with your kids in a positive manner will help establish the skills and structure that we have already talked about. Also, you know where your kids are at and what they are doing during this time as well. More and likely you will also see your kids playing games outside of Family Game Night as well as they will enjoy them. You will also see your kids sharing their love of games with their friends, and when they are home playing games, they are not out where boredom could get them into trouble.

When I was growing up, my friends and I started playing Dungeons & Dragons. While my mother was not keen on the game due to its bad press image, she let us play because we played at our house for hours on end and were not out causing trouble. A Family Game Night just might be the positive outlet that they need for their energies.

Traditions

As time goes by the Family Game Night will move from a scheduled event to a family tradition. Kids will grow up and start their own families and many will carry the tradition into their family then. You can also see the tradition get shared with your extended family or friends.

I know when I reflect back on life, I always miss the traditions that came to an end. Those times in life represented stability and help motivate me to bring traditions to my kids. While it may not seem like a big benefit, down the road when you look back you will understand.

Legacy

A legacy born of the Family Game Night will be those rare times when the odds are broken and something occurs when in all probability it should not have. These moments will live forever in the minds of those that were participating.

Examples:Royal Flush

· Rolling doubles way too many times in a row.
· Getting dealt a great hand
· The David & Goliath moments
· The Herculean Effort
· When all was lost, yet you still won

You just never know when a legacy moment will happen or how it will, but when it does it will burn itself into your memory for a lifetime. When these moments happen I always like to comment to the effect of that is why I play the game, for moments like that!

If you have any questions about the Benefits I would love to help! Just ask below! Also please feel free to share any tips you may have!


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16 Replies to “The Benefits”

  1. This is an awesome site reflecting on what should be implemented in a family’s structure. It puts kids in the realm of making decisions and learning that sometimes those decisions come with a cost. This way it’s so much fun. It’s so true and relevant to today’s parenting needs and family overall wellness. Great information!

  2. James, this is a great site with information and lots of ideas on keeping the family entertained and happy bonding with the game nights! Thanks for sharing,

    Cheers,
    JT

    • Thank you much, I really appreciate the feedback. Have you ever tried using a Family Game night as a way to get the family together? I have done it with friends and family and it is always great fun times.

  3. I am intrigued with your page. I have Facebook page called
    Believe You Are Not Alone. It’s basically about depression,suicide, bullying, etc. This August I am trying to put an event together were it promotes families getting closer, kids feeling better about themselves, and making friendships. I have 210 games collected. I had a goal of 500 but I don’t foresee making that. At this kick off event each kid is going to walk out with a brand new game of their own. I’m not promoting that part or the entire city would be there. I want this for kids and families who need it. Than each month we will have a game night get together. My ultimate goal is to share with these kids in the beginning about abuse, bullying, depression, and suicide. I grew up with everyone of these things. I remembering feeling so alone. I want these kids to know they aren’t alone. They are important and have a future. I want to see kids smiling and laughing and having fun just being themselves. After I share about these things and my life I want each and every kid to walk out with a new game. My problem is I don’t know how to promote it. I’ve thought and thought and I’m at a loss. I also wish I could get some games donated to make this a success. Do you have any ideas? Or do you think I’m nuts?

    • This is an awesome idea and honestly one that is picking up momentum. I am seeing more and more Family Game Nights popping up at local libraries, youth centers, etc..

      As far as promoting it, you will need to reach out to your community. Talk to local businesses and media about what you want to do and why. The more you talk about it the more steam the event will pick up and I am sure you will also come across more games that will be donated for the kids. The biggest thing though is to just embrace the community and be involved in it and you will see your idea bloom. I would stop in and talk to every local business as well as clubs and organizations. Maybe even reach out to your local boy & girl scouts or similar clubs.

      I wish you all the best with this as it is a very noble project and one that will be welcomed by families. Just keep talking about it and reaching out. If I can be of any further assistance, please just let me know.

  4. Another excellent post. Of all the benefits these games bring, I think my favorite growing up was the bonding. Sure my critical thinking and communication skills were developing significantly- but I was having fun and bonding with my family at the same time. To me, nothing beats time with the family. Thanks for sharing, great article!

    • I think we are like minded there Dev as bonding is definitely my favorite benefit as well. Sometimes the game itself doesn’t matter at all as long as you are spending time with a loved one.

  5. This website is a great idea. My daughter is 11 and always wants to play family games, but I am the only one who wants to play with her. We sometimes play mastermind or Ludo or other boardgames. I will bookmark the page and come back to it.You have so much on here!

    • Wow you just flooded me with childhood memories of Mastermind!! My sister and I used to play that game all the time.

      I am very glad that you are enjoying the site and I will do my best to make sure that each time you come you continue to feel that way. Now I need to go see if I can dig up that Mastermind game…

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