Home Career 46 Best Board Games and Card Games for Preschoolers

46 Best Board Games and Card Games for Preschoolers

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Whether they incorporate cards, dice, boards, spinners—or even an adorable cardboard monster and an oversized spoon—games have a host of benefits for young children. Games help children develop academic, spatial, and critical-thinking skills. Some games even provide kids with an opportunity for that oh-so important movement break.

When kids play with their classmates, they practice social-emotional skills like cooperating, taking turns, and being a good sport. Not to mention the good old-fashioned fun in playing games and the nostalgia that teachers will feel, as many of these games were plucked right out of the 1980s and 1990s! Many mainstream games are perfect for the preschool classroom. Check out our list of the best board and card games for preschoolers.

1. Color Go Fish!

Eeboo Go Fish Card Game box with goldfish and bubbles on the cover and sample cards of pink and green as an example of best board games for preschoolers
Amazon

This classic game is a childhood staple, and these cards are easy on little hands and eyes.

Buy it: Color Go Fish at Amazon

2. Taro Gomi’s Funny Fish Go Fish Card Game

Taro Gomi's Funny Fish Go Fish Card Game deck of cards with colorful and whimsical objects on the case cover
Amazon

    

Once your students understand the premise of “Go Fish,” treat them to this adorably imaginative version from a favorite illustrator. They’ll love making pairs of “Strawberry Fish,” “Scribble Octopus,” “Lobsterbots,” and more.

Buy it: Taro Gomi’s Funny Fish at Amazon

3. I Spy, Dig In

A box shows hands digging into a pile of small plastic toys. The text reads I Spy Dig In as an example of best board games for preschoolers
Amazon

We love that this game works on fine motor skills while also encouraging vocabulary recognition. Kids will love the frantic finding required to match all the objects on their cards!

Buy it: Briarpatch I Spy Game at Amazon

4. Math for Love Tiny Polka Dot

Box cover and sample cards for the Math for Love Tiny Polka Dot Game with various dot configurations and numbers for children to match as an example of best preschool card games and board games for the classroom
Amazon

Here’s a year’s worth of math-center activities for you in one cute and tiny box. Sturdy and visually pleasing cards offer tons of possibilities for building number sense. Students can use them to count, match amounts, compare, subitize, and more.

Buy it: Math for Love at Amazon

5. Operation

A silly cartoon scene of many doctors performing surgery on a man is shown in this example of best board games for preschoolers.
Amazon

This is the perfect game for older preschoolers since they will need to have good hand-eye coordination to retrieve the pieces.

Buy it: Operation at Amazon

6. Shopping List Memory Game

Box for Shopping List Memory Games with two children and grocery cart full of food items as an example of best preschool card games and board games for the classroom
Amazon

Children race to be the first to fill their shopping baskets with the items on their lists. The board is simple and uncluttered, and the picture-and-word shopping lists encourage the development of concepts about print.

Buy it: Orchard Toys Shopping List Memory Game at Amazon

7. Memory Match Game

Preschool memory match game in this example of best board games for preschoolers.
Amazon

Preschoolers will feel empowered once they catch on to the principles of this basic memory game. The enticing Popsicle-shaped cards will get them talking about attributes while they play.

Buy it: Memory Game: Summer Camp Edition at Amazon

8. Kerplunk

Two cartoon children play a game that has a long clear tube with sticks through it and marbles on the top (best board games for preschoolers)
Amazon

Pull out a stick, but whatever you do, don’t let the marbles fall! You may want to buy an extra set of this game since it’s sure to be a favorite.

Buy it: Kerplunk at Amazon

9. Monkey Around

A box says Monkey Around and has cartoon monkeys and a banana on it.
Amazon

This is one of the best board games for preschoolers because it’s easily adaptable to large-group play. Movement cards ask kids to practice gross motor skills while playing with a fun beanbag banana.

Buy it: Monkey Around: The Wiggle & Giggle Game at Amazon

10. Bunny Bedtime Make-a-Choice Game

Box for Bunny Bedtime Make-a-Choice game with a bunny in pajamas with a teddy bear in this example of best board games for preschoolers.
Walmart

Help kids learn basic game-playing skills like rolling a die and moving along a path in a familiar context: bedtime! Kids love helping make decisions about how Bunny’s bedtime routine will go.

Buy it: Bunny Bedtime: The Make-a-Choice Game at Walmart.com

11. Scavenger Hunt Cards

A ring holds a lot of circular scavenger hunt cards (best board games for preschoolers)
Amazon

This is the perfect game for the whole class to play at once since there are enough sturdy scavenger hunt cards to go around. The cards encourage literacy development since they have both pictures and words on each card.

Buy it: MollyBee Kids Scavenger Hunt Cards at Amazon

12. Pete the Cat: The Missing Cupcakes Game

A game board features a cartoon crocodile, turtle, and other animals eating deserts in this example of best board games for preschoolers.
Amazon

Anything with Pete the Cat is an automatic preschool win. To get Pete’s cupcakes back from Grouchy Toad, kids must name objects, sing songs, and act out charades.

Buy it: Pete the Cat: The Missing Cupcakes Game at Amazon

13. Guess Who?

A game board has cards facing up with names and cartoon faces on them. Text reads Guess Who?
Amazon

The suggested age range is 6 and up, but we feel confident that with a little coaching, older preschoolers will fall in love with this old-school game. It will encourage use of descriptive vocabulary too.

Buy it: Guess Who? at Amazon

14. Zingo!

Box, playing card, and card dispenser for Zingo game with tiles matched to playing card as an example of best preschool card games and board games for the classroom
Amazon

Sliding the card dispenser has a similar appeal to spinning a bingo cage. Zingo supports vocabulary development and print awareness as well as focus—you have to be watching to call out and snag your picture first! Spanish, sight word, number, and word-building versions are also available.

Buy it: Zingo! Bingo With a Zing at Amazon

15. Perfection

Two cartoon children play a game that is on a red board and has different shaped yellow buttons in it, some are shown flying up from the board.
Amazon

This game challenges kids to match shapes correctly while also challenging them to race against the clock. Kids will get a kick out of the pieces popping up when time runs out.

Buy it: Perfection at Amazon

16. Pancake Pile-Up!

A game box shows pancakes piled up. There are plastic pancakes also shown on plates with toy forks. Game cards are pictured. (best board games for preschoolers)
Amazon

This game works on both patterning and sequencing while also working on balance and coordination. Bonus: You can even use the game pieces for imaginative play in a toy kitchen!

Buy it: Pancake Pile-Up! at Amazon

17. Candy Land

Box for Candyland board game with colorful candies and characters and candy cane striped writing
Amazon

This classic game might make adults groan, but we still consider it one of the best board games for preschoolers. Why? Kids can take it out, set it up, and play it by themselves. Cooperation and independence for the win! (Pro tip: Provide a playing card tray for easy management of the draw pile and discards.)

Buy it: Candy Land at Amazon

18. Dominoes

A colorful box says Dominoes and has dominoes spilling out of it.
Amazon

Dominoes is a versatile and timeless game for all ages. This set from Melissa and Doug is super-sturdy and gets kids recognizing standard dot formations of numbers 1 through 6.

Buy it: Dominoes at Amazon

19. Hungry Hungry Hippos: Dino Edition

A cartoon purple dinosaur is shown with a mouthfull of plastic balls (best board games for preschoolers)
Amazon

No list of best board games for preschoolers would be complete without some version of Hungry Hungry Hippos. We love this particular one since dinosaurs tend to be a favorite for any preschooler!

Buy it: Hungry Hungry Hippos: Dino Edition at Amazon

20. Rat-a-Tat Cat

Box and sample animal number cards from the Rat-a-Tat-Cat game
Amazon

The goal of the game is to have the lowest score when someone calls “Tat-a-tat cat!” This game builds number sense and teaches the concept of zero. If you’d like to encourage conversations about numbers, opt to have students play with their cards turned up and visible.

Buy it: Rat-a-Tat Cat at Amazon

21. Ladybug’s Garden Memory Game

A wooden board has little circular holes in it some of which are filled with lady bug circles.
Amazon

Another memory game but this one is just too cute not to include. And kids have to use their motor skills to fit the lady bugs into the holes.

Buy it: Ladybug’s Garden Memory Game at Amazon

22. Heads Talk, Tails Walk

Game box and sample cards for the game Heads Talk Tails Walk showing a monkey and a horse put together with cards
Amazon

In this matching game with a twist, the fun comes when you turn over cards that don’t match! When this happens, players must move like the animal body card and make the sound of the animal head card. Stomping like an elephant while clucking like a chicken is hilarious when you’re a preschooler—or a preschool teacher!

Buy it: Heads Talk, Tails Walk at Amazon

23. Connect 4

A board shows slots with either red or yellow tokens in them.
Amazon

This is another perfect game for the older preschoolers in your class. Your students will have to use their critical-thinking skills in order to outsmart their opponent and get four in a row.

Buy it: Connect 4 at Amazon

24. Banana Blast

Game box, monkey puzzle and game setup with monkey sitting on a mound of bananas for the Banana Blast game
Amazon

Cue the squeals of laughter—kids love the suspense of this game! Remove the bananas one by one to see which one makes the monkey jump. The included puzzle is a nice bonus for friends to make together.

Buy it: Banana Blast at Amazon

25. Frankie’s Food Truck Fiasco

Box for Frankie's Food Truck Fiasco game showing a cat driving a food truck as an example of best preschool card games and board games for the classroom
Amazon

Practice matching basic shapes while helping Frankie the Cat create his food truck meals. The real appeal (and sneaky fine motor strength-building) comes from the Frankie-shaped “squeezer” players use to move the game pieces around.

Buy it: Frankie’s Food Truck Fiasco Game at Amazon

26. Colorama

Box and sample game board for Colorama game showing multicolored squares and shape pieces
Amazon

Players roll two dice to get a color and a shape and must locate a matching spot on the board. There are multiple levels of play for different groups.

Buy it: Colorama at Amazon

27. Richard Scarry’s Busytown: Eye Found It!

Box and game board, cards, playing pieces, and spinner for Richard Scarry's Busytown Eye Found It game
Amazon

This oversized game board gives plenty of room for a group of kids to spy items in the pictures and move ahead on the board. The goal is to get to the picnic before the pigs eat all the food, and everyone has to help!

Buy it: Richard Scarry’s Busytown: Eye Found It! at Amazon

28. Charades for Kids

A box with stick figure children on it says Charades for Kids (best board games for preschoolers)
Amazon

This version of charades is one of the best board games for preschoolers because it’s designed for little kids. Preschoolers need opportunities for movement, and this game provides just that as they have to act out a variety of scenarios. The game also encourages vocabulary development as the cards have both pictures and words.

Buy it: Charades for Kids at Amazon

29. Uno

Box for UNO card game showing sample color and number cards and a wild card
Amazon

Every kid should learn to play Uno. It’s marketed for ages 7 and up, but the rules are easily adaptable for younger children. With enough practice, they’ll be unleashing the Draw Four cards like pros.

Buy it: Uno at Amazon

30. Hoot Owl Hoot!

Box for Hoot Owl Hoot game showing three colorful owls in trees on a night sky background
Amazon

Players must work together to get the owls back to the nest before sunrise. Color cards, similar to Candy Land, move the owls closer to the goal, but there are a few added twists to make it more interesting.

Buy it: Hoot Owl Hoot! at Amazon

31. Snail’s Pace Race

Box and game board with multicolored snail game pieces for Snail's Pace Race game as an example of best preschool card games and board games for the classroom
Target

It’s often the simplest games that are best. Players take turns rolling color dice to see which snails to move in this cooperative game. Which snail will win? Oh, the suspense! Swap out one die with a regular die if you want to speed up the game and encourage number recognition.

Buy it: Snail’s Pace Race at Target

32. Feed the Woozle

Box for Feed the Woozle cooperative preschool game showing an orange monster with google eyes and a large mouth with teeth
Amazon

There are multiple ways to play this silly game. In the simplest version, players roll a die to determine how many pieces of food to “feed” the Woozle. But wait: Walking across the room balancing the food on the spoon adds an extra challenge. Players cooperate so they can satiate the goofy creature’s appetite.

Buy it: Feed the Woozle at Amazon

33. Where’s Bear?

Box for Where's Bear: The Hide-and-Find Stacking Block Game cooperative game showing a bear peeking out from behind the game title
Amazon

Players hide a wooden bear under one of six sturdy nesting blocks decorated as rooms in a house and then try to find him. This game capitalizes on toddlers’ love of hiding things and offers a lot of language-building opportunities. This is perfect for a class of 2-year-olds or a multi-age group in which older students can play the adult role.

Buy it: Where’s Bear? at Amazon

34. Race to the Treasure!

Box for the Race to the Treasure game showing an ogre peeking at a bag of gold
Amazon

This game is our go-to for older preschoolers ready for a bit of strategic play. Players cooperate to create a path to reach the treasure before the ogre does.

Buy it: Race to the Treasure! at Amazon

35. Hi Ho! Cherry-O

Hi-Ho Cherry-O preschooler board game
Amazon

Kids will have a blast picking pretend fruit from the trees on the preschool game board while they’re practicing math skills such as counting, addition, and subtraction!

Buy it: Hi Ho! Cherry-O at Amazon

36. Don’t Spill the Beans

A Cartoon jar has cartoon beans cming out of it with various facial expressions.
Amazon

This game requires no reading, so it’s great for young kids. It’s also perfect for improving fine motor skills as kids try to place beans in the jar without tipping it over.

Buy it: Don’t Spill the Beans at Amazon

37. Alphabet Bingo

A Bingo card is shown withe upper and lowercase letters on it.
Amazon

Is there a more classic game than bingo? It definitely deserves a spot on any list of the best board games for preschoolers. This updated version can help kids improve letter recognition, letter and object association, and concentration skills. It’s also a great opportunity for social-skills development and cooperative play.

Learn more: Alphabet Bingo at Amazon

38. Don’t Break the Ice

Don't Break the Ice preschool game
Amazon

The object of this old favorite is to keep Phillip the Penguin on top of the ice, but as the game goes on, the ice blocks start falling. Kids can work on fine motor skills, problem-solving, and learning to take turns while they have fun!

Buy it: Don’t Break the Ice at Amazon

39. Peppa Pig Chutes and Ladders

Peppa Pig Chutes and Ladders
Amazon

A forever favorite, Chutes and Ladders is an excellent choice for kids who haven’t yet learned how to read. They’ll have the best time playing this Peppa Pig–themed game while simultaneously improving number recognition.

Buy it: Peppa Pig Chutes and Ladders at Amazon

40. My Feelings

A board game box says My Feelings. It has faces making different emotions on it.
Amazon

Social-emotional learning is particularly important in the pandemic world we have been living in. We love the regulation strategies this game teaches children to help manage their overwhelming feelings.

Buy it: My Feelings Game at Amazon

41. Count Your Chickens

best board games for preschoolers include this game that shows a winding road on a board game with a cartoon chicken. Text reads Help Mama Hen Gather Her Chicks.
Amazon

This game is perfect for the preschool-aged crowd since it is fast-paced and stresses cooperation over competition. Children as young as 2 can learn skills like turn taking and counting while having fun at the same time.

Buy it: Count Your Chickens at Amazon

42. Grocery Go Karts

Two cartoon carts with faces are shown on a game box and text reads Grocery Go Karts.
Amazon

In this action-packed board game, players stack their groceries on their carts as they race to the checkout line. Preschoolers will work on their fine motor skills since they will be connecting and stacking the various grocery pieces. They will especially love the end when they get to launch their groceries from their carts!

Buy it: Grocery Go Karts at Amazon

43. Pizza, Pizza!

A board game box has two cartoon chefs on it standing in front of a pizza. Text reads, Pizza, Pizza!
Amazon

This is the perfect game for 3- to 7-year-olds to learn their shapes and colors while having fun creating yummy (and yucky) pizzas! It will also teach them valuable skills like taking turns and making choices.

Buy it: Pizza, Pizza! at Amazon

44. Sight Words Game

Amazon

Sight word recognition is so important for preschoolers. This game features 400 commonly found words on different-colored flies that correspond with different ability levels, so you can cater to different literacy levels. And little ones will enjoy swatting the flies!

Buy it: Sight Words Game at Amazon

45. Season Wise

A game board box features a snowman, pumpkins, a rainbow, and a sun. The text reads Season Wise in big letters.
Amazon

This game teaches valuable skills like categorizing and sorting while also teaching about the four seasons. We love that it could even spark some debate since some of the cards could go for more than one season.

Buy it: Season Wise at Amazon

46. Keepy Uppy Game

best board games for preschoolers include this game. A box is shown with the dog cartoon character Bluey on it. A contraption is on a table and a fake balloon is suspended on a see-saw.
Amazon

The preschool-aged crowd loves the show Bluey and the oh-so adorable characters featured in it. This cute board game is based on a popular game from the show Keepy Uppy. The best board games for preschoolers are fast-paced and fun, and this one certainly fits the bill!

Buy it: Bluey Keepy Uppy Game at Amazon

What do you think are the best card and board games for preschoolers? Come and share in our We Are Teachers HELPLINE group on Facebook.

Plus, check out our favorite ideas for sensory tables.



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