Review: Play These Games by Heather Swain

Play These Games by Heather Swain
Paperback, 256 pgs.
Published May 1st, 2012 by Perigree Trade
Source: Publisher
Taken from Heather Swain’s Website:

Using simple, everyday items found around the house, PLAY THESE GAMES will inspire kids and the young at heart with a spectrum of ingenious games to make and play so they’ll never be bored again!
  • Gather family photos to create a personalized set of Go Fish cards
  • Grab loose buttons for button golf, shuffle button, and button hockey
  • Unleash your inner pinball wizard with a clothespin and cardboard box version of the arcade classic
  • Get out the hula hoops and brooms for a backyard jousting tournament
  • Try one of fifteen variations of the classic game of Tag
Whether it’s competitive or cooperative, for large groups or duos, the games in this clever guide are fun to create and a blast to play.

 Anyone who has young kids knows that kids are very good at losing pieces to games.  They also know how hard it can be to get kids creative and out of sight of the TV.  I know I have problems with both of these, as well as the issue of money and not being able to afford every game out there.  And this book was extremely helpful.  There were quite a few things that I remembered doing when I was kid but had completely forgot about.  There were other things that I immediately got excited about because it’s so simple (I like simple!) that I was smacking myself for not thinking of it already!

With summer on it’s way I’m already trying to think of ways I’ll keep my kids busy and this book really helped with ideas.  I don’t need to buy anything, I don’t need to worry about throwing my money away on a game that’s played once than never seen again and I have a whole book full of ideas!  My only problem now is getting my kids to decide on just one activity or game from the book as it’s already proven to be difficult to decide!

This book has simple, easy to understand directions and simple black and white pictures.  This is definitely a book for the adults or older (teenage) kids to read as it’s fairly wordy and the pictures aren’t terribly stimulating.  But I think it’s perfect for what it’s for.  It also has an adorable cover, in my opinion.

This book is a must-have for those with kids.  Lots of games are ones adults would love as well.  Does anyone else have fond memories of playing kick the can with entire neighborhoods of kids?  Well, I do and I’m hoping with this book we can inspire more play and less TV time.

Disclosure:  I received this book for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are my own and I was not paid or influenced in any way.

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  1. I love all kinds of games but the board games and other non-video games are still the best. Sitting around the table with friends and family, rolling the dice or throwing cards–some of my best summer memories.

  2. I know about keeping track of pieces. I am sure this is full of fantastic stuff but probably a bit to old for my two. I will put it on my list to check out, though. Happy weekend :)

  3. Mary, I totally agree! My memories that are strongest are those of the family spending time together. Or of all the neighborhoods getting together to play kick the can or hide and seek or any of those games.

    Most of the games might be a bit too old for your kids but some can be made to work for them. Simple things like stacking papercups and then they knock them down and stuff like that. But yes, it’ll be handy for when they are just a little older and have longer attention spans.

  4. Hi Candace,
    I reviewed this book on my blog last week. I absolutely agree with you. I love this book. It has so many simple, fun games for kids to play. I love the fact that you can find most of the items in your home. This is a great book for any parent to have around the house. Great review.

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