Friday Games: Preschool games

preschool games for the whole family

We love to play games here, as you might have noticed.  We’ve been playing games with the kiddos since they were little, but we didn’t play the usual preschool fare (Jeff threatened to throw out Candy Land after one particularly long and painful game).


So, here’s our picks for preschool games:

Give a Dog a Bone

Give a Dog a Bone – This game can be played easily in five minutes if the timing of cards is right, it’s never the same game twice because you are designing the game board.

It doesn’t feel overly competitive, but it’s fun.

The dog is going for a walk and you design the board as he moves, by putting the tiles down in the order you want.

If your color dog is on the square he lands on then you get however many bones are on that square.  Game is over when all bones are gone, and the person with the most bones wins.  It’s short enough you can play several in a row without losing attention.


Digger's Garden, preschool game

Digger’s Garden-This game is on loan from a friend.  It’s ridiculously simple, match the shape or color and get the number of point that are matched together.

What makes it hard is going for the most number of matches.  I’ll just say my boys routinely beat me at this as I struggle to find the right matches that get me more than 5 points a turn.  They’re finding 10 point matches.  Game is over when you’re out of tiles.

Seriously, it’s not fair they beat me at this.


Can You See What I See? preschool game

Can You See What I See? – Based off of the “Can You See What I See?” books, this game is really fun.  Each person gets 10 cards.

When it is your turn, you draw a card and match items to your cards.  If they match the card you drew, then you can put that in the found pile.  First person to find something on all of their cards wins.  It’s fun, a good visual discrimination game, and one Jeff is willing to play with the kids.

If you want the game to go more quickly, then you simply lower the number of cards you get.


What do all of these games have in common?


1.  Quality pieces– All of the games have very think playing cards or pieces that are easy for pre-schoolers to hold.  “Give a Dog a Bone,” has some good quality plastic pieces that are sturdy enough to be used as toys in their own right.


2.  None of these games are overly long to play.  In our house Candy Land and Chutes and Ladders were horrible when the boys were in preschool because the game lasted too long.  They couldn’t concentrate long enough to finish.  And the adults weren’t enjoying it either.


3.  Longevity, this seems contradictory to the last statement, but hear me out.  With the exception of “Give a Dog a Bone,” they all have long play time past pre-school.  I find “Digger’s Garden” challenging to find good matches, so I enjoy playing it with the kids.  I don’t find “Can You See What I See” as challenging, but it’s still fun to play together.


Linking over at:

Learning All the Time

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10 thoughts on “Friday Games: Preschool games

    • I know what you mean. That’s part of why I started our Friday Game tradition because otherwise we would never get all of our cool games played.

  1. We don’t have any of these games, but Anna enjoys Rivers, Roads and Railroads (I can’t recall the exact title). It’s a coop game and can go on forever as you build your world. It’s better with more people, but it’s fun.

  2. We are big game people here. I just played my first actual game with my 2yo granddaughter, “Sneaky Snacky Squirrel”. The premise is super simple, but she loved it! I am going to have to check out the Give a Dog a Bone game- that sounds like fun!

    • That sounds like a cute game. I highly recommend Give a Dog a Bone for little guys, it’s cute and easy to play.

    • Until my boys were preschoolers and I played Candy Land, it had never occurred to me how long it was.

  3. I don’t know how I missed this post! Thanks for the suggestions! We have and like the same Rivers, Roads, and Rails game that Natalie mentioned.

    • Maybe the distraction of a little baby?
      I’ll have to see if anyone has those games, I’m rather curious about it now.

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