Who hates hearing someone say, “I’m bored”? it’s even worse in a group setting like a classroom, because attitudes can be contagious. Whether it’s adults or kids if one person starts complaining, soon you won’t have enough cheese to go around for all that “whine”. But seriously, our board games are simply divine. Wait…I mean your board games, because really it’s you who needs to create them, but we’ve got the perfect template and enormous amount of great symbols to fill the content.

If you haven’t used Smarty Symbols “board game” template then…. YOU’RE MISSING OUT!

Just click on the “printing center” button on the top blue bar. It will bring you to a new menu where you will select “from template”; find the “board game” template and press “apply”. You’re all set to create a masterpiece. We’ve got some great ideas to get you started:

Physical education or just need more exercise?— have the squares filled with smarty symbols of different exercises; there is a great range of traditional exercise “jumping jacks” to silly ones like “bear walk”. When one player falls on that symbol they need to do the exercise listed.  

Need more exercise: Have background colors to each image that signify whether the person will do the exercise “alone”, “they pick a person”, who will do it with them, or that everyone must do the “exercise together.

Core content teachers— have students create their own board game around the subject. Creating boardgames can be a great group project activity. For most subjects like English, History, and Science, making a deck of trivia questions to accompany the board can be a great way to review material. Creating something new off of known materials is considered “Synthesis” within the Bloom’s taxonomy which is a higher level thinking skill.

just for Math— do what every government does: START PRINTING MONEY!!! —money for your game that is. Use our symbols to make your money rather funny. Use the board to have scenarios that would force math equations. Instead of moving extra space for correct answers pay fines for wrong answers (just like in real life there’s no bonus if you do your taxes right but if you get caught doing it wrong you know what happens).

just for English— Retell the story that was read in the form of a game board. Plots are often like a crazy board game with crazy twists and turns. Make the real event that happened every few spaces. Make alternative scenarios to what really happened. This both makes students have to understand the content they read, but also reflect and analyze (higher level thinking skill) the choices of the characters.

just for History—Have the students retell a historical event with . If each group (or individual ) works on a different historical event work as a class to join all of the game boards together to make a historically huge game. This can be a neat way having them think about how events connect to each other.

just for Science— How about an “awareness” board game? Science is a lot about conservation of our planet, or coming up with new ways for science to benefit society.  Pick an endangered species and build the game around that with multiple choice trivia. The same could be done by having students pick a disease, a cancer or other area that they would like to see more research for. Letting students have a degree of autonomy in what they choose can help them see how science affects something they care personally about; not to mention it can give an intrinsic boost to their learning.

just for Speech Therapist

  • Create an articulation game based off of the nifty “sound search” feature. Have each square with a target word to practice their needed phoneme.
  • language skills— make a board based off of the “expressions” category
  • social skills— make a board with a different social skill on each square. Have students practice it when they land there.
  • motor oral skills— fill each square of the board with different motor oral positions. Have students practice the skill when they reach that square.

just for home—-

  • make a gift— base the game about a family member. People love to know that they matter, and it’s a cool way of showing them that you pay attention to them and the things they like. Center it around either things that have happened in their life or just around their interests. Showing you care means more than expensive gifts.
  • humanize a subject at school— as mentioned in our Bingo blog, sometimes teachers make a subject more scary or dull than it needs to be. Help your struggling one at home see that the subject can be fun and that you too value what they are learning.
  • challenge their creativity— who can make the most awesome board game of all time? Spend a day where everyone works on creating their own game. Play a different game each night. It will be neat to see the difference between what Mom, Dad, brother, and sister can come up with. Talk about the ideas in the above post: they can incorporate play money, trivia, exercise. Need a starting point have them think about what their favorite board games are and why they like them. Then see how they can recreate this magic themselves. Soon they’ll be both “analyzing” and “creating” (both of which are higher level thinking skills).

Never Too Old for a Board Game— there is a prominent expensive board games out there for law students to practice for the Bar. If a a law students can use it for to help with their degree why can’t other professions?  Learning can always be fun with the right frame of mind.