Have your girls ever been interested in board game development? If your looking for ideas to learn how to play board games and design your very own board game use some of these activities below to get you started!
I partnered with CodeSpeak Labs, which specializes in computer science education for kids, to bring you these resources.
Board Game Design Activity Booklet
Before jumping into some ideas, do you want to skip all the planning? If so, use the Board Game Design Activity Booklet which has engaging exercises that teach girls how to design a fun board game. These activities include using computational thinking to create game rules, designing a game with a partner, and incorporating game feedback. With step-by-step activities, you can’t ask for a easier way to run your meeting. Learn more about this activity booklet and get yours today!
Be sure to also checkout these other activities your girls will love:
Other Fun Board Game Design Activities
Jumanji is one of the most beloved children’s stories that features board games! While there is a lot of fantasy, it also covers major elements of a good board game. After reading the story, girls can discuss:
- What was the objective of the board game Jumanji? What did players have to do to win?
- What were the rules of the game?
- What made the game fun to play? What would you change to make the game more fun?
Play a Board Game
Before embarking on designing their own board game, it’s a great warm activity to have the girls actually play a board game together.
While some girls might come from families who have a weekly game night, other girls may be less familiar with board games, and it might help to have everyone start discussion with a common experience.
Games like Guess Who and Chutes and Ladders are well known. Many recently developed board games like Count Your Chickens tend to be cooperative– everyone works together to win rather than competing against each other.
If you have the girls sample through board game stations they can make comparisons, like:
- Which game did you like the best? Why or why not?
- How was your experience different in a competitive game vs. a cooperative game? What are the benefits and drawbacks of each type of game?
Remix a Common Game
Sometimes starting from scratch can be harder than remixing an existing game. This activity can get the creative juices flowing.
Take a game that everyone knows, like Candyland.
- Change the rules. For example, instead of the “Finish” space being the goal, you could make getting one of each color being the goal.
- Assign new properties to the spaces. For example, if you land on a blue space, you get a “Candy Point” and all players have to amass a certain number of points.
- Turn a competitive game into a cooperative game, or vice versa. Have players be able to trade cards with each other, so everyone can try to get across.
Make a Board Game with Real Pieces
If you want to go above and beyond, you can order generic board game pieces that you can incorporate into the girls’ own game. You can order a set on Amazon here with blank money and pieces.
In our Board Game Design Booklet, we include paper templates that you just print out. Girls can color, decorate, and cut out the templates and turn them into a playable game! It also has step-by-step instructions with activities that don’t require any additional materials.