Our First Board Game – Chutes & Ladders

by Michael

Tonight Bug and I played her first-ever board game.  I admit to being slightly ashamed of this fact being that she’s 4 and this is the first time I’ve exposed her to an actual, physical board game, but she’s not shown any interest until now.  It wasn’t even my idea, she actually found the box and started taking everything out looking at it and pretending to play, so I asked if she wanted to really play, and she was all about it!  I have both girls tonight, ask asked my oldest if she wanted to play, but it’s hard to convince a nearly 12-year-old to play Chutes and Ladders.
So we set up and played a Dora themed version of Chutes and Ladders, however, to mix it up, I decided I’d be Spider-man, just so Daddy had his own goofy spin on it.  She did well.  I of course helped her, explaining the rules and making sure she counted her spaces outright, but we played a whole game without stopping.  She won “of course” because Daddy slid down one too many chutes.  I was slightly surprised though because once or twice I’d catch a ladder and spring ahead of her on the board.  When that happened I was expecting some complaining or fussing, being a slightly sore player when thinking she could lose, however, she took it in stride like a champ.  Something that made me very proud of her, even if I didn’t share.  I remember playing with her sister at 4, and she’d always complain if she didn’t win.  She’d try and cheat or do something to ensure victory.  I let her get by with that for a while, but not long, and it looks like with Bug that’s something I won’t have to worry about as much.
Surprisingly enough, after Chutes and Ladders, she wanted to play Candyland and she had found that game as well, so we of course played Candyland, getting Sissy to play for about half the game.  Doesn’t seem like games that, as she put it “are made for preschoolers” can hold the attention of a preteen near as much as One Direction can.
So, Bug and I played Candyland, to her delight, and she whipped my butt on it, fair and square too.  She had a blast playing it though because we’d go back and forth on who was leading on the board, and she was really proud of her victory after that.  So it was definitely a successful night, and definitely the first of many board game nights we’re going to have.  It’s definitely something I’m going to start doing more of now that she has an interest in it.  Guess I’ll need to go check out the board game aisle next time I’m in the store and see what else we can play, and hopefully be able to include all 3 kids in a game soon.

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