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We. Love. Games. Have you noticed? Our game closets rival the toy aisles and we’re always adding to our selection. Games are the perfect way to work on a variety of goals in a child-directed, playful way. While the classic winning and losing games have their place, we also love a good cooperative game.

What Are Cooperative Games?

Cooperative games are games where players work together to reach the goal and win the game. Typically players play against the game itself. These types of games are great for families to build relationships and work together. Let’s face it, winning and losing is really hard sometimes so why not win and lose together? 

How to Make a Game Therapeutic

Here are some goal areas to keep in mind next time you play a game with your child:  

Turn-taking: This is a foundational and important skill for so many of our littles. Games are perfect opportunities for learning to take turns. Create a little verbal routine, “First your turn, then my turn, then your turn…” This helps them know when they take a turn their turn will come back around. 

The goal of the game: This is like the main idea of the game! Does your child know the goal? Can they express it back to you? What a great way to work on language skills for summarizing. 

Sequencing, Organizing, Planning Ahead: Let your child set up the game and organize the pieces. Can they sequence the steps and explain what to do on your turn? Help them plan ahead for what will happen next. 

Problem Solving: Strategize together, explain your ideas, and work together to pick the best solution. Reflect on what worked and what didn’t work. Support each other's ideas! 

Do you need more cooperative game ideas for your child? Check out the Peaceable Kingdom cooperative games or ask your therapist for their favorite game for your child’s developmental level.