As an adult, you need to be creative and open-minded if you want to keep an active preschooler entertained. Out of all the toys out there, which one will help keep them focused and concentrated that doesn’t involve a touchscreen or video game control?
Finding one that is just right for kids in this age range can be tricky. You don’t want something too challenging that will leave them feeling frustrated, but you also don’t want something that is too easy.
Wondering what the best board games for 3-year-olds are and how to go about choosing one? Read on, and we will share some useful tips with you in this informative guide.
Top 10 Board Games for 3-Year-Olds Comparison Table
Thankfully, the good old-fashioned board game hasn’t been lost to the modern technology and gaming options that have kids glued to a screen all day.
Those games are fine, too, but it is important to find a balance, so adding a few board games to the selection is always a good idea. Here are some tips to help you choose the right one.
Matching and Recognition Games – These games are ideal for kids around the three-year mark since most of them can’t read yet.
Strategical Games – Not all board games have to focus on memory and recognition. Strategical games help children develop critical thinking skills, which is why Sequence for Kids made it to our top three.
Teamwork – Games that have kids work together can help encourage teamwork and nourish better social skills. Some children are rather competitive, so try to incorporate a mixture of games that allow them to work together as a team and against each other occasionally. You can help teach them the importance of good sportsmanship.
Consider the Playing Time
Don’t forget to see how long a round will last when playing the game. Are you looking for something that kids will finish quickly (15 minutes) or would you like to keep them entertained for longer periods?
Age Matters – Are They About to Turn 3 or Already 3?
Children mature at different stages, so it is difficult to choose a specific list of the best board games for 3-year-olds since kids are all different!
Shopping for games that a preschooler can enjoy is your best bet, and be sure to consider their current age as you compare games. Manufacturers print the recommended age range on the box to help you understand how much use you can get out of the game, which is helpful as a consumer.
Almost 3 – If you need a game for a 2-year-old about to turn three, keep in mind that some games may contain pieces that they aren’t ready to handle. The warning printed on the box will alert you if a game is not safe for kids under three years old, but it’s really up to you based on your child’s maturity level.
Games recommended for kids ages 3-5 should offer the right level of challenge for a child of three.
Already 3 – Kids who are already three years old and about to turn four will enjoy slightly more challenging games. Those that were recommended for children ages 0-3 years or 1-3 years are usually too simple at this point, so opt for games that they can use well into preschool and maybe even kindergarten.
3 Best Board Games for 3-Year-Olds Reviews
These are some of the best games for 3-year-olds according to parents and adults these days – we think so, too! If you already own them or if your child tried them and wasn’t interested, check out some of the other great board games on our list.
Richard Scarry’s Busytown Eye Found It! is ideal for building teamwork skills among kids.
It accommodates a maximum of four players whose objective is to make it across the board to the ferry and arrive at Picnic Island before the pigs eat all of the food.
You will need a lot of floor space for this one since the board is long and narrow (it is over 6 feet long). If you have a table in your home that is long enough, it won’t be a problem; we recommend setting it up on the floor.
Since part of the game includes “I Spy!” moments, kids will eventually start to memorize where things are on the board, and it might present less of a challenge. If you use this a couple of times a month, this shouldn’t be a problem. However, if you use it regularly, it will provide less of a challenge for them.
Overall, it is still one of the best board games for 3-year-olds on our list and one that will leave everyone feeling like a winner at the end.
Sequence for Kids is a game that will help kids learn about strategy, much like Connect4 or Tic-Tac-Toe. There is no reading required, and all kids have to do is make a sequence of four in a row.
Some of the cards in the deck allow players to take a chip away from the board to prevent an opponent from winning, and other cards allow you to place a chip anywhere you like, regardless of the cards you have. We have definitely seen it create some competition among players, so if you have a toddler who isn’t so great at losing, this could be a potential learning tool to help teach them about good sportsmanship.
It accommodates between 2-4 players, and while the manufacturer recommends it for kids ages 3-6, kids can easily play with an older sibling or adult. Everyone will enjoy this game!
Hoot Owl Hoot is a quick game that kids can play in 15 minutes or so. If you’re organizing an activity that includes rotating stations for a preschool or daycare, this game will fit in perfectly.
As a cooperative game, kids will work together to get the owls from into the nest (at the center of the board) before the sun comes up. Everybody is a winner if they make it in time, and everybody loses if the sun comes up and not all of the owls are in the nest. It helps then with color matching skills and strategical skills, and there is no reading involved.
It is definitely suitable for 3-year-olds (even though the manufacturer’s recommended age is 4 and up). The cards aren’t very high in quality, so if the game is used heavily, they will wear out quickly. Teachers might want to laminate them to help prolong their use!
If you’ve never seen it played, check out Peaceable Kingdom’s video that provides an overview.