Children have to get bored; there is no better spark than boredom to ignite creativity. However, we are not going to leave you bored all day without doing anything. Many times parents eat our heads to find the most fabulous and quirky home activities for our children to have fun. However, why complicate us so much? The paper and pencil games they are also great entertainment to enjoy with children at home.
For this reason, below we propose some simple challenges and games for which you only need a pencil, pen or marker and a sheet of paper. Ready to play?
Have you ever played all these games? Below we propose different challenges designed for different ages. Feel free to adapt the difficulty of the game to your child's level and knowledge.
1. Home maze
On a sheet of paper, we could draw a maze from which our child has to find the way out. On one side, we draw an element (a child, for example) and at the end of the maze another (a ball). The objective is for the children to find the way to join the two by avoiding the obstacles in the maze.
2. Pen races
Have you ever done pen races? It's a great game for the whole family! And you only need a sheet of paper (in which you have to draw a circuit, as if it were a motorcycle race, with its 'start', its curves and its 'goal') and a pen that is one of those with a ball in the tip.
All participants start at the starting line. In turn, each one makes a roll so that their pen moves forward. To move, you have to place the pen perpendicular to the folio, that is, supporting the tip and leaving it completely vertical. A finger is placed on the top and the pen is propelled so that it runs forward. On the next turn, the roll is made from the last point the pen reached. Which pen will reach the goal first?
3. Join the dots in a drawing
Not all moms and dads have the gift of drawing well. However, you don't have to be great artists to make a simple drawing of our children like an apple or a bear. You can draw it in pencil, without pressing too much, and along the silhouette put dots with numbers with a pen so that if the children put them together in order they will be able to draw our design. Do not forget to erase the pencil so that the silhouette surprises the children.
4. Our own funny monster
This is a very simple game that sets off the creativity of the little ones in the house. We need a role in which the first player draws the head of a monster or being extraordinary. Once you're done, fold the paper so that only a little of the neck is showing. Now it's up to the next player to draw the monster's shoulders from the neck. When you're done, fold the paper back so that only the underside is showing. The next one will have to draw the gut and the next the legs and feet.
When you have drawn the complete monster, unfold the paper to see it complete. Surely you have a very funny monster!
This is one of the simplest but most entertaining games. To enjoy with it we need a squared sheet, like the ones that many notebooks have. It is as simple as that each player, in their turn, has to make a line that corresponds to one of the sides of the squares that are printed on the sheet. The goal is to draw the four lines of a square to get a point. But you have to do it hairline by hairline!
To count the points once you have finished the game, it will be easier if each one of you has used a pencil or a pen of a different color. Although you can also mark your squares with a different letter, as shown in the image.
6. Who am I?
One of the players thinks of a character and has to draw it so that the rest of the participants can guess who it is. A great game that is also a lot of fun!
7. The three in a row or four in a row
A game of paper and pencil that cannot be missed in an afternoon of games at home. One player draws circles and another crosses, it is about joining three (or four, depending on the game you are playing) in the same line, which can be vertical, horizontal or diagonal. Who will win the three in a row?
And designed for slightly older children, 7 years and up, here are some very simple challenges and games that will make you have a great time.
8. Word searches
Word searches can be purchased ready-made or made yourself. It is very simple. You just have to draw a square on a sheet of paper and place a few words (both horizontally, vertically or diagonally). Then you just have to write other random letters around it (well placed in rows and columns). Who will find the most hidden words?
9. The hanged man
The classic of the classics! It is about guessing a word from its letters. To do this, the first player has to write as many lines on the sheet as there are letters in that word. If you want to make the game easier, you can write some of those letters to give clues.
Players who have to guess must say letters aloud. If these letters are part of the word, they are written where they occupy. If they are not there, he accumulates negative points that are translated into drawing a stick figure. Every time a letter fails, you have to draw its body, an arm, the other, a leg, the other, the head ... And when it is completely drawn, the game is over. It took you a long time to guess the word!
10. Tuttifrutti or stop
Known as tuttifrutti, stop, stop, cease fire, flea market or now, this is one of the most fun games with paper and pencil that we can propose to children. At the top of the page (which we will place horizontally to make it more comfortable) we place different categories: names, surnames, animals, cities, countries, colors, foods, product brands, etc.
At the beginning of the game, one of the players proposes a letter. All participants must find a word in each of these categories that begins with that letter. When a player fills in all the boxes the game stops, even if the rest have not finished. Then everyone's answers are compared: each correct answer scores 10 points and if several players agree on a word, they score 5 points.
11. Naval battle
The Naval Battle game, also known as Sink the Fleet, is a lot of fun, especially for older children. To play you have to get a sheet of a squared notebook and agree on the boats that we are going to use: a boat that occupies 4 squares, two with 3 squares, three with 2 squares, etc. Next we must draw a large square, which will be our battlefield, place these ships and number the columns (from 1 to 15, depending on the size of the board) and the rows (A to J).
Next, the players have to try to guess where the opponents have placed the boats: A5, C6, E9 ... When it hits a square on our boat, we have to say 'hit'; and when it has already 'touched' all the squares of our ship, we will have to say 'sunk'. The player who first sinks all of his opponent's ships wins.
Surely you have done crossword puzzles many times. It's a great way to entertain children at home while stimulating their thinking. You can buy a crossword book or you can make your own. You just have to think of some words that can be intertwined through their letters and write a clue for each of them.
13. The story continues
The first player writes a sentence on a piece of paper. The next, another phrase that continues the story of the first. Then it is the turn of the next participant or the first participant again, who will also have to continue writing the story. Little by little you will weave a fun collective story in which everyone will have participated.
All the games that we have proposed are examples that family leisure at home does not have to be complicated to plan or boring. And there are many benefits to carrying out these entertainment challenges with pencil and paper.
- We teach kids that simple is great too
With games of these characteristics we convey to children that simplicity can also be a lot of fun. Therefore, we teach them to appreciate the little things.
- We stimulate reasoning, strategy and logic
All these games make children think, since they all require that they be present in an active way.
- We encourage creativity
With the games of creating stories and drawing we get children to put all their imagination to work.
- We work manual dexterity
By having to take the pencil (let's make sure it is done correctly) and use it for games, we are also working on manual dexterity, especially in younger children.
- They acquire vocabulary and review spelling
With games like hangman, we help children learn new words and how to spell them.
You can read more articles similar to 13 challenges and paper and pencil games to enjoy at home with children, in the Games on Site category.