Guest Author - Lynn Little
So, over the summer your family has established a regular game night where the whole family enjoys a few board games. Now with school back in session, the fate of game night looks bleak since between homework and an earlier bedtime there is considerably less time in an evening to play games. Just how can you work in playing board games on a school night? With a little planning, the whole family can still enjoy those fun board games.
Set a time limit for games. Back to school means an earlier bedtime routine. Once dinner is over, it's time to either do homework, take a bath, or some other activity to get ready for the next day. This leaves little time for games; however, if you can only squeeze in thirty minutes for game night, then play a short game. If a family favorite game takes longer than that to play, make a house rule that makes the winning condition something that can be achieved within thirty minutes of play or so many turns.
Play game that can be finished within 30 minutes. If you only have an hour for game night, choosing two or more games that take less time to play will help to make sure that more family members get to pick a game to play. Some games have abbreviated rules so that they can be finished in a shorter amount of time. There are plenty of great games that can be played in less than 30 minutes. Most board games will list the average playing time within the rules of the game.
Plan ahead for game night. Have children finish their homework before dinner. Prepare dinner ahead of time so that once the family has eaten, then the game night can begin. Some time before game night, either cook two meals on another night of the week and save one for game night or consider take out for game night. Having those nighttime activities done as soon as possible will mean squeezing more family game time in.
Even though days will now be hectic with school activities and other activities, making time to play board games as a family can be a fun way to connect with your kids. Those television programs can wait. Record your shows to watch at a later date and make game night a weekly event.
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