Thursday, June 13, 2013

Barefoot Books Cooperative Board Games

There is only about one week left to make a Barefoot Books purchase in support of "Giving Diapers, Giving Hope."  To this point, I've talked a lot about why we love Barefoot books for young children.  However, the wonderful thing about Barefoot, is that there is something for kids of all ages.  Today I'll mention a few ideas for the older kids in your life.

"Giving Diapers, Giving Hope" Barefoot Books Fundraiser
June 1st- June 20th 2013

Fundraising Goal: $200
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Cooperative Board Games

As a child, my Dad often played board games with me.  We didn't own very many games, but one of the games I remember well was Monopoly.  We would sit down to a game, and soon, things began to go sour.  He was purchasing hotels, I was bleeding Monopoly money.  Pretty soon I was frustrated, angry, and yet fully determined to destroy him in the game.  We usually ended up quitting before there was a winner, but we both knew that I had ultimately lost the game. Of course, my Dad could have let me win, but I would have known and been unsatisfied with that scenario.
*Photo Credit: Barefoot Books

This is part of the reason I was so excited to discover that there was an alternative to the competitive board games of my childhood.  Barefoot Books offers cooperative board games where the players work as a team to win the game.  Not only is a cooperative board game more fun to play with your children (because if you win, you're all winners), but I believe it's more realistic as well.  In the workplace the capacity to collaborate, share ideas, and create strategy as part of a team is crucial.  In fact, the cut-throat, "all about me" philosophy seems rather detrimental to both workplace progress and group mentality.  I recently read an article on a homeschooling blog that suggested we aren't teaching our children enough about using their resources: relying on people and information around them to understand how to problem solve.  In competitive games, there are no opportunities for suggestions (that may be cheating if I offered to discuss the best place to build my Monopoly house).  However, in a cooperative game, children are able to develop a thought process, discuss ideas with the group, and change their opinions.  As a PhD researcher, I can tell you that 90% of what I do is problem solving: coming up with ideas, discussing them with a team, changing my ideas, and testing my ideas.  These skills aren't coming naturally to adults, because we aren't supporting the development of these skills as children.
*Photo credit: Barefoot Books

One of the first cooperative board games I purchased from Barefoot Books was Mermaid's Island. I bought this as a birthday gift for our four-year-old niece. I knew she was going to love the artwork and, of course, the fact that it was about mermaids!  One of the best-known cooperative board games from Barefoot Books is "Hoot Owl Hoot."  This is an award winning game for ages 3 and above where you work as a team to help the owls return to their nest before the sun rises.  Barefoot books has a variety of cooperative board games that each help to develop a sense of team work.  You'll also find a good selection of puzzles, crafts, and even some competitive games (such as this Batabanga card game) available from Barefoot Books.

*Photo credit: Barefoot Books

What types of games do your kids enjoy playing?

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  1. Tales from old Ireland or tales from Celtic land

  2. these look awesome! i remember spill the beans and don't break the ice when i was really little, but as soon as i could shuffle, it was all about playing cards: uno, rummy, go fish, crazy 8s, you name it! our little one likes moving the pieces around the sorry board, but doesn't grasp the counting aspect yet.

  3. The Map of the World play scene looks wonderful and educational!

  4. I like the Barefoot book of Earth Tales

  5. I like the Dreamland CDs from different places like Africa! I would love to expose my baby to things like that.