New twists on family game night - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

New twists on family game night

The more creative the game, the more thoughtful, clever, funny and outrageous your kids can be.  © iStockphoto.com/Amanda Rohde The more creative the game, the more thoughtful, clever, funny and outrageous your kids can be. © iStockphoto.com/Amanda Rohde
  • From Ideas That SparkMore>>

  • 6 nifty ways to organize your laundry room

    6 nifty ways to organize your laundry room

    Is it time for a laundry room overhaul? To become an organization pro, here is some advice that works like magic.>>
    Is it time for a laundry room overhaul? To become an organization pro, here is some advice that works like magic.>>
  • Spoil your dog with these gifts

    Spoil your dog with these gifts

    The loyal companions who give us the best gifts year-round, welcome home dances, warm snuggles and unconditional love, deserve to receive some gifts as well.>>
    The loyal companions who give us the best gifts year-round, welcome home dances, warm snuggles and unconditional love, deserve to receive some gifts as well.
    >>
  • Slow cooker questions, answered

    Slow cooker questions, answered

    Get the scoop on these five commonly asked questions, and kick your cooking up a notch!>>
    Get the scoop on these five commonly asked questions, and kick your cooking up a notch!
    >>

By Sarah Mahoney

Think you know everything about your family? A good parlor game may reveal more than you'd expect. The more creative the game, the more thoughtful, clever, funny and outrageous your kids can be. They'll go nuts for contests that require you to show a different side too -- especially if it's a ridiculous one! These five non-board games will help bring out the unexpected best in your family.

M.A.S.H.

An acronym for Mansion, Apartment, Shack or House, this game is a hit with preteens -- and a great way to learn more about what your kids think about the future, says Heather Griffith, a social worker in Boston who coaches families on how to play games. Choose one fortune-teller, who then writes M.A.S.H. on the top of a single sheet of paper and then draws four category squares beneath it. Fun categories to start with include careers they might choose, number of kids they might have, cars they might drive and cities they might live in. The first player then lists five possibilities in each category, which the fortune-teller writes down. Another player chooses a magic number (less than 10), and then the fortune-teller begins counting items, including the letters at the top of the page, crossing off every seventh item until only one remains in each category.

What would you do?

Debbie Mancini-Wilson, a Pittsburgh mother of two boys -- and author of Color My World, a book that helps kids tap into their creativity -- likes games that vault kids into strange scenarios. Maybe the person chosen to start the game says, "A UPS guy walked into the house today wearing a gorilla suit. He started tearing the kitchen apart," and then asks another player, "So, what would you do?" The second player might say, "Well, we were out of bananas. So I fed him my math homework, but he was still hungry," and then questions the next player, "So, what would you do?" and so on. "Games like this not only give you a glimpse inside your kids' heads and hearts, they're a rehearsal for real life," says Mancini-Wilson. Another plus: Since no one wins, even kids who hate to compete will like it. When the story flags, just start another.

Dictionary

The first player opens a dictionary, chooses a random and obscure word, jots down the true definition and then announces the word to everyone else. Players then either write down the real definition if they know it or invent a clever idea for what the word could mean. In each round, points are awarded for both correct answers and the most clever inventions. "Really quiet kids can shine in this game," says Griffith.

The great piggy bank adventure

Many families rule out computer and video games for family game night, but check out this online freebie. Not only do you earn truffles to fill your piggy bank, you'll learn a lot about your kids' -- and spouse's -- innate financial acumen, as they decide whether to go for higher-risk banks, pricey dreams or practical solutions.

Telephone

If your games tend to be serious or cerebral, uncover a different set of emotions with a game that is 100 percent silly. "We really struggle to find games that appeal to all three kids in our blended family -- an introverted 12-year-old, a cheerleading 9-year-old, a 5-year-old who feels left out a lot and a semi-serious dad," says Lesa Caskey of Pasadena, Calif. "We stumbled on Telephone, and the kids laughed as they whispered the phrase down the line like it was the most amazing game on earth. They'd never seen their dad be goofy like that," she says. "We found out we all have a silly side."

Copyright (c) 2010 Studio One Networks. All rights reserved.

Sarah Mahoney is a contributing editor at Parents and Prevention magazines. Her work also appears regularly in Family Circle and Good Housekeeping.

HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Success by 6More>>

  • Washington State school ratings for 2013-2014; How does your school rank?

    Washington State school ratings for 2013-2014; How does your school rank?

    Thursday, July 23 2015 5:40 PM EDT2015-07-23 21:40:00 GMT
    Thursday, July 23 2015 7:55 PM EDT2015-07-23 23:55:15 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The ratings for the 2013-2014 school year for Washington State high schools, middle schools and elementary schools came out this week from the Washington State Board of Education.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The ratings for the 2013-2014 school year for Washington State high schools, middle schools and elementary schools came out this week from the Washington State Board of Education. The schools were ranked based on their average growth in math and reading of all students and specific subgroups.>>
  • KHQ honors this year's Teachers of the Month

    KHQ honors this year's Teachers of the Month

    Thursday, July 2 2015 12:17 PM EDT2015-07-02 16:17:15 GMT
    Thursday, July 2 2015 12:17 PM EDT2015-07-02 16:17:15 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - It's the end of another school year... marking the 27th year KHQ and Eastern Washington University have partnered together to celebrate some of the region's best teachers through the Teacher of the Month program. Congratulations... from KHQ Local News and from Eastern Washington University.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - It's the end of another school year... marking the 27th year KHQ and Eastern Washington University have partnered together to celebrate some of the region's best teachers through the Teacher of the Month program. Congratulations... from KHQ Local News and from Eastern Washington University.>>
  • What the experts say about reducing the cost of college (sponsored)

    What the experts say about reducing the cost of college (sponsored)

    Friday, June 5 2015 1:44 PM EDT2015-06-05 17:44:37 GMT
    Friday, June 26 2015 2:34 PM EDT2015-06-26 18:34:46 GMT
    Tuition, fees, housing, books, financial aid, student loans, college savings plans. Yikes! With so many factors to consider, you might need a degree just to master the cost of attending college. For more great tips and a handy monthly budgeting worksheet, learn more from our friends at STCU.>>
    Tuition, fees, housing, books, financial aid, student loans, college savings plans. Yikes! With so many factors to consider, you might need a degree just to master the cost of attending college. For more great tips and a handy monthly budgeting worksheet, learn more from our friends at STCU.>>
  • Michael Anderson Elementary Wins Book Drive School Challenge

    Michael Anderson Elementary Wins Book Drive School Challenge

    Michael Anderson Elementary on the Fairchild Air Force Base took the Challenge- so did Windsor Elementary in the Cheney School District. Their mission -to collect books for the Success By 6 Book Bank.>>
    Michael Anderson Elementary on the Fairchild Air Force Base took the Challenge- so did Windsor Elementary in the Cheney School District. Their mission -to collect books for the Success By 6 Book Bank.>>
  • Got A Pre-schooler? Pick Up a Kindergarten Readiness Calendar

    Got A Pre-schooler? Pick Up a Kindergarten Readiness Calendar

    Got a Pre-schooler? Pick up the Kindergarten Readiness Calendar at any local library! Getting ready for Kindergarten starts long before your child sets foot in their Kindergarten classroom! That's>>
    Got a Pre-schooler? Pick up the Kindergarten Readiness Calendar at any local library! Getting ready for Kindergarten starts long before your child sets foot in their Kindergarten classroom! >>
  • Young Children Learn from Everyday Life

    Young Children Learn from Everyday Life

    They say kids don't come with an instruction manual, yet parents, especially new parents are bombarded with all kinds of advice from friends and family. There are books and websites offering endless lists, tips and tricks for parenting.  Jill Johnson, Communications Specialist for Family Resources at Community-Minded Enterprises and Success by 6 Board Member says you can teach your children with simple, everyday activities.>>
  • Want Your Child to Love Learning? Let Them Play!

    Want Your Child to Love Learning? Let Them Play!

    Want your Preschooler to Love Learning? Let them play! Gwendolyn Haley, Spokane County Library District Youth Services Manager, and Success By 6 Board Member, says playtime is the most important part of a preschooler's day.>>
  • Your Baby: 2 Months

    Your Baby: 2 Months

    Our Success By 6 Pediatrician, Dr. Mary Kay Wagner, host of our "Your Baby" series discusses the finer points of living with a 2 month old baby. >>
*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.