Top Ideas for Indoor Summer Fun

Summer break is in full swing and kids across America are have settled into their I’m bored routines. If you’re in need of something engaging and fun, that also encourages independent play – board games for kids are essential! Our family loves board games, puzzles, and simple indoor activities (year round) anyway. So, I got my kids together and they helped me come up with our top 10 list of summer games!

All the games listed have been played by members of our family and are well loved in one way or another. Check it out!

Top 10 Games for Your Kids to Play This Summer!

Pancake Pile-Up – For the Littles

I decided to kick the list off with a super fun one for the smallest game playing members of your family! Pancake Pile-Up is such a blast! While we don’t personally own this game yet, we have played it as a family and it’s a ton of fun! If you have competitive littles, this is a great option for summer play! The object of the game is to create your own pancake stacks (no hands allowed, only spatulas!) before the other player creates theirs.

This game is great for direction following, motor skill building, and just plain fun! My 5 year old absolutely adores this game and to be honest, even my older kids enjoy playing it with her! Definitely a fun one to beat the summer heat.

Jenga – For All Ages

If you have got the Nerves for it Play some Jenga

Yes, this is such a great one for summertime! Jenga has been around for quite sometime, and I would imagine it’s already a common in most

American households. This game is great at making kids think, as well as encouraging them to have simple moments of calm and steady structure! While traditional Jenga game play is super fun on it’s own, creating original games out of these blocks can sometimes be even more fun. My older children thoroughly enjoy doing building challenges with these blocks, and younger children can have just as much fun simply by stacking and re-stacking! An amazing option for keeping kids busy this summer.

Word-A-Melon – For the Family

Word A Melon-Fun Learning Game for KidsThis is a new one for us, we actually just got it about a week ago. So much fun though! Word-A-Melon is a fun word game created by Bananagrams. You basically try creating the longest word you possibly can with the amount of watermelon seeds you have in play. The person with the most letter seeds collected at the end, is the obvious winner. My favorite thing about this game? It’s super great for early readers! I played this with my young daughter and she had so much fun sounding out letters and creating words. This can almost double as a summer curriculum aide, but shhhh the kids don’t need to know that! Absolutely love Word-A-Melon for summertime fun!

While I haven’t personally tried these, I’ve also heard wonderful things about both Bananagrams and My First Bananagrams! Looking forward to adding both to our game collection in the near future.

Battleship – Best for Big Kids

Any moms out there play this game when they were younger? Oh my word. I loved it then, and I love it now! Battleship is a year round favorite in this house, but definitely an essential for summertime! If you aren’t familiar with this game (I’m half tempted to say you must be living under a rock, but I wont 😉 – haha) the object is to blindly guess your opponent’s ship locations and sink them! So much fun! Honestly, my 11 year old and I play this more than anyone else in our house. Keep in mind though, it’s too difficult for littles.Battleship-A Classic Game that's always fun

Suspend – Best for Big Kids

Suspend-Don't Knock it DownThis game is super fun for older kids that enjoy a little creative thinking. Suspend encourages independent play as well working together with other friends or siblings. The object of this game is to stack your rods without collapsing or sending the rest crashing down. My 11 year old tends to play this on his own when he’s bored, however there are times that my kids enjoy it together. While I’ve never personally played the game, I absolutely know it’s a winner because it keeps my boys busy and engaged for some time!

UNO –  For the Family

UNO-A Classic Never DiesHad to go classic on this one you guys. UNO is a huge family favorite around here! We typically play the spin version (no longer sold in stores I don’t think) as a family, but there is nothing like playing the original! This simple card game is a great way to involve everyone in the family. When my daughter was younger, we included her by letting her team up with an other child or adult. However, now she is picking it up on her own! It’s incredible!

Older kids can also play this game completely on their own for hours on end with much ease. So if you’re looking for a simple solution to curing the boredom of your 10 or 11 year old, UNO could definitely be the one! As much as I love the regular version, I’ve recently had my eye on the UNO Retro. This seriously makes me think of my childhood you guys! So much fun is to be had with this amazing little card game.

Otrio – For All Ages

OTRIO-Tic Tac Toe with a Twist and Fun for the Whole FamilyThis game is seriously amazing! I actually purchased it for my kids around Easter this year, and let me tell you… These kids have already had countless hours of endless fun playing Otrio! It’s a crazy-twisted version of tic-tac-toe, that you can laterally win multiple times during a single game. So much fun! Even my 5 year old has a blast with this one. Otrio is definitely a must have for the game loving family! Love, love, love this one!

Pucket – Best for Big Kids

My son got Pucket as a gift for his birthday, it is such a blast! It has a similar feel to air hockey or foosball. However, instead of one puck being passed back and forth, each player starts with 8 and tries to get all their pucks to the opposing side. Obviously the player with an empty side at the finish is the winner! While this game might sound super simple, it’s actually quite tricky and super fast paced! Absolutely love this game, just keep in mind it’s not good for littles.Pucket-A Great Game for Older Kids

Bounce Off – Best for Big Kids

This is a new one for me. I’ve actually never played this game myself. However, my 13 year old has with some friends and he tells me it’s amazing. So naturally I had to include it on this list (because seriously, my 13 year old doesn’t have that opinion on very many things, haha!). Bounce Off is pretty much a game of luck and aim. Each team (or person) is trying to bounce their balls into specific holes in the game board to create a pattern. This game is great for older children or teenagers that just enjoy a good challenge!

Gravity Maze – Best for Big Kids

Gravity Maze-Engage the Brain and have Fun too

Ok, if you’re on the hunt for a good activity for your children to do on their own… this is the one! Gravity Maze is a one player game for kids that love logic games. The object of this particular game is to get your marble to the red target. So basically, (as my son describes) you use pre-built towers with tunnels inside, to move your marble from place to place. This kid has spent many hours building and playing with his Gravity Maze. It’s a sure winner for indoor summer fun!

Laser Maze-A Game that's Fun but Engages the Brain too

On the lookout for more games like Gravity Maze? Another favorite in our house is Laser Maze! Very similar concept, plus wonderful for independent play!

Get up and Play!

While I don’t have a ton of littles games on this list, there are so many good ones out there to choose from if it’s what you’re looking for. I tried to focus more on school aged children that need a little extra something to fill their time while school is out this summer! If you are specifically looking for preschool aged games you can find my top 5 favorites (that aren’t on this list) right here – Let’s Go FishingConnect FourDon’t Break the IceCandy Land My 5 year old daughter absolutely loves all these games!

Other wise, I hope you found some great game options for your kiddos this summer! Games, puzzles, and fun activities are what summer is all about! Looking for even more to keep your children busy this summer? I highly encourage you to check out The Boredom Buster, Summer Reading Challenge, and 21 Kiddie Crafts for June! For now though, get up and encourage those kiddos to play some games! Enjoy!

Until Next Time