101 Family Vacation Games is a compilation of activities that can help entertain both children and adults. The games are divided into six main categories - travel, vacation, beach, outdoor, home, and birthday party games. The book title is somewhat misleading because the games, with the exception of some of the beach games, can be easily adapted to be played anywhere. There is also a special section at the end with games parents can use to interact with babies and young children.
The layout of the book is excellent. Listed at the beginning of each game is the number of participants required, the level of difficulty, and whether any props will be needed (i.e. music or a deck of cards). Most of the games are fairly simple and can be completed quickly. Also provided are ways to modify the games so that younger children can also be included. Several of the games are old favorites, such as Charades, I Spy, and Rock, Paper, Scissors, but there are many with which I had not been previously familiar.
The author stresses the importance of making sure everyone understands and agrees to the rules before the game begins. He also states the importance of parents taking part in the games so they can share similar experiences with the child and create memories as a family. Playing provides many benefits including: exercise, learning ways to relate to others socially, releasing stress, and acting as a diversion to forget about one's problems for a short time. Some games help to develop reflexes and concentration skills. Others involve exploring the world around us. The next time you see children playing don't be surprised if they are actually learning something.
I recommend 101 Family Vacation Games for all parents and children. It will not only help to develop a closer relationship between the two but also allow them to learn more about the other's thoughts and dreams. Playing together develops lifetime memories that become more precious as the years pass. It is important to set aside a few minutes each day to play, whether it is to remove oneself from life's daily stresses or simply to spend time with those you love. — Leslie Granier, Reader Views
Jump-start family fun time with these 101 ideas for games and past times. You shouldn't wait for your next vacation to spend some time with these simple, low-tech games.
Right out of the bubble mailer my boys were playing Word Tennis and laughing out loud. On first inspection, I spotted some tried-and-true favorites, like Rock Paper Scissors, which are probably already in most families' repertoire. But for the most part, the games were new to us. I appreciate the useful table of contents matrix, which matches each activity with the number of people needed.
You might think of "vacation games" as "games to play in the car." But that is just the first section of this book. There are categories for: Travel Games, Games at the Destination, Beach Games, Sand Figures, Outdoor Games, Games to Play at Home, Birthday Party Games, and finally Games for Babies and Young Children.
If you are like me, and your brain stalls when required to come up with something to entertain your children, you'll want to have this book handy. I know I will. — Mary Ann Therese, LibraryThing.com Early Reviewer
I admit it. Although I am a creative person, sometimes after a long day at work or a long drive to a vacation spot, I am exhausted. Flipping on a video screen is an all-too-common cop-out to using my brain to think of something more creative, more engaging, and ultimately more satisfying.
But now I have the solution! With this great little book I don't have to put my brain into high gear to think of something to do--- I can just browse through dozens of easy and fun games for kids of all ages, categorized by situation, age, and equipment needed. There are some old favorites, but many ones that were new to me. All were well-explained and looked entertaining to play. Also included were many tips and encouraging words that simple creative play really is both necessary and fun and doable even in hectic 21st century life.
I really appreciated both reading the book and putting it into practice. Highly recommended for all families. — wiseasgandalf, LibraryThing Early Reviewer
This book is full of great game and activity ideas for kids of all ages. There's a special section just for babies and toddlers, and many games that are suitable (or can be adjusted) for older children or pre-teens. While some of the games are old favorites (I Spy), there are some great new ones that I can't wait to try with my daughter. There are active and rambunctious games, and also mellow quiet one-person activities. A great selection! — Kyliebeth, LibraryThing Early Reviewer
Some of the games in this slim little volume are familiar, others were completely new to me. Having a hundred game ideas grouped themetically by the circumstances one might play them (e.g. travel games, beach games, game to play at home, birthday games...) is a good balance between variety to keep things interesting and a manageable sized book that you'd actually want to throw into your travel things. My daughter is only two, so most of these 'family games' are completely beyond her, but perusing the section of games aimed at babies and small children, I thought there was potential for things to try over the next year or two so this book will definitely be sticking around. — Elfchild, LibraryThing Early Reviewer
About the Author
Shando Varda is a storyteller, musician, community artist, teacher, workshop leader and playleader from kindergarten to corporate levels. Inspired in the 1970's by the New Games Foundation's approach to cooperative play, he now teaches and leads play with people of all ages. He lives in Lyme Regis, Wales.