My staff and I enjoy whipping up simple games around the classroom all year long but the holidays offer up so many fun trinkets and symbols that it makes whipping up simple holiday games just so easy to do.
When working with young children, you quickly learn to keep all games open-ended even if you have modeled it after a traditional game like tic-tac-toe. The children will definitely think of their own rules for play which helps keep them interested in playing the game.
Miss Abby added a writing component to inspire the children to make their marks. As the children played the game, they kept “score”. Now I don’t know what “winning the game” or “keeping score” meant to each child but as you can see, we had some great score keeping going on!
The focus of simple DIY games is to promote conversation, cooperation, taking turns, building friendships, and exposing the children to a variety of games that invite them to strategize, problem solve, think, and make decisions.
Leaving the games out so the children can come back to them over several days or weeks also helps the children master their skills and understanding for how to play a game with each other.
In the end, simple games for preschoolers should be…. well, simple! The more you have to explain “how to play the game,” then chances are the children will be less inclined to choose to play the game on their own.
When the game is simple and there is no pressure to win or follow specific rules, the children will take ownership of the game playing experience which leads them think “I can do this,” and “playing games is fun!”
Gingerbread Matching Game
Available on Amazon