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How to Make an Elementary Knowledge Board Game

written by: Kathy Foust • edited by: Noreen Gunnell • updated: 9/11/2012

This article gives specific directions on how to make a fun learning game for the whole family.

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    Making a General Knowledge Board Game

    Follow the instructions below to create a board game that will have the ability to develop as your child develops. This board game will assist your child in the practice of knowledge they have gained in school. As your child gains more knowledge, this board can be modified to add new knowledge. For even more fun have your child help you to make the game!

    1. Go to any dollar store and purchase a piece of poster board, colored markers, dice and some index cards.

    2. Draw a path on the poster board that starts at one end and ends at the other. Make sure this path is wide enough to hold a game piece (about 2” wide. Now separate the path into 2” squares by placing a line every 2” along the path.

    3. Separate the index cards into 5 piles.

    4. For each pile, write one of the following words on one side of the cards; English, Math, Science, Social Studies and Bonus. These cards are simplified and other subjects can either be added later in the form of new cards or added to the existing piles of cards. For instance, when the child is studying history, you can add history items to the social studies cards instead of creating an entirely new pile. Using this method you will not have to modify the board at all when new knowledge is practiced.

    5. In a regular pattern, write these same four categories on the board. For instance, starting at the beginning you may write “English” every 10th square and Science every third square. This doesn't’t even really have to be in any type of order or pattern really, as long as there is about the same amount of squares on the board for each subject. Not all the squares need to have something printed on them either.

    6. Using the index cards, write fun questions or activities on each card. These should be entertaining as well as educational. In other words, for Math cards, you don’t want to simply write “What is 100 divided by 10?” Instead, you would write something like “Take the number 100. Do enough jumping jacks to match 10% of that number.” The idea is to have fun with knowledge.

    7. Bonus cards are cards with silly things on them, such as “Name the seven dwarfs”.

    8. Decorate the game board so that the beginning has a start arrow and the end has something fun to aspire to. For instance, if your child really likes to watch movies, then maybe a picture of a movie reel at the end with the prize being that the child gets to pick that night’s movie.

    9. Periodically, as you go along the path of the board, you should put things like “Math, ask the person on your left”, which means that the player draws a math card and the person on the left must answer it or perform the activity on it. You can also add things like “Go back two spaces” or “lose a turn” to the board as you see fit.

    10. Game pieces are personalized. If your child is into rocks, then let them use a favorite rock as a game piece. If your child likes to sew, have them use a neat button as a game piece.

    11. Going clockwise, roll the dice and move the amount of numbers that are displayed on the dice.

    12. Please keep in mind when you make this board that you are making it in an age appropriate manner. However, if you have more than one age level playing you may want to color code the cards for the age appropriate questions. For instance, if you have a child in 1st grade and one in 4th grade, make the Subject cards different colors for each level. For example, the Math cards are pink and blue. The pink ones are for first grade questions and the blue ones are for fourth grade questions. Do this for every subject.

    Use this information to make even more learning games! Make a game that tells children how to tell time or a game that helps to develop math skills specifically.