University Games

Preschool Board Games for Kids

University Games Preschool Learning While electronic teaching aids can be fantastic, there is nothing like board games. Believe it or not in this electronic-dominated world children still love board games. Playing board games with young children not only strengthens the family bond, but game play has cognitive benefits for children as well.  Each of these preschool board games from University Games includes some type of strategy such as counting, color recognition, matching, and more!

I Spy Dig In Game

The I Spy Dig In Game is based on the popular I Spy series of books. Kids practice literacy, coordination, and social skills as they race to match the images on their cards with objects from the bowl. The game is simple to play.

Preparing to Play I Spy Dig In Game

Decide which side of the I Spy Dig In Game cards to use (coloured or grey). Each round everyone uses the same side. Shuffle the cards and give one to each player. Each player puts their I Spy Dig In Game cards in front of them with the chosen side facing up. Place the hourglass timer next to the bowl. Put all the I Spy Dig In Game playing pieces into the bowl and mix them around.

How to Play I Spy Dig In Game

I Spy Dig In GameFlip over the hourglass timer and the younger player goes first starts the timer. They need to find as many of the pieces on their card as they can – using BOTH hands! Once found, a piece is placed onto its picture on the card.

When the timer is up, play moves to the next player on the left who has to find all the pieces on their card in the same way and so on until all the players have had their turn.

As soon as the final player has finished, all players at the same time then start searching for the remaining pieces that they need to complete their card – but now they only use one hand each.

For the all in stage there is no time limit. The first player to collect all the pieces on their card wins the round and keeps their card. If two or more people pull out their sixth piece at the same time, they each win the round.

The player who completes 3 cards in a row wins the game.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed Game Review

University Games brings you Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, a fun game for children  three and up based on everyone’s favorite nursery rhyme by Eileen Christelow. The game is rather simple to play, introducing children to counting and strategy while developing fine motor skills. The object of the game is to get all of your monkeys onto the bed. This is easier said than done.

To start the game:

Preschool Board Games for KidsEach player then position a monkey on the start space. The other five monkeys for each player start in front of the players. Place one monkey on the bed at the beginning of your turn. University Games recommends the youngest player start, followed by the next youngest, and so on.

Players then take turns spinning the spinner to find out how many spaces they can move around the game board. Move your monkey that many spaces on the game board.  When you land on an action space you collect a token that matches the image on that space. But,  not until you act out the bedtime routine action for that space.

An example would be brush your teeth. There are four types of tokens to collect: Take a Bath,  Put on PJs, Brush Teeth, and Go to Bed. Once the action is completed, place the corresponding action token in front of you. If you land on an action space you already have a token for, perform the action and the rest of the steps as usual, but do not take a token.

When ladding on a Monkeys Jumping on the Bed space you place the specified number of monkeys indicated onto the bed. If you do not have that many monkeys left, put all your monkeys on the bed. You then press the red button on the bedpost, which can make the bed pop up and knock all your monkeys off the bed. If it does, any monkeys that have fallen off the bed get returned to each player. As you move around the game board, if you pass the start square, place another monkey on the bed.

The first person to have all four tokens and a minimum of four monkeys on the bed, wins the game.

Pete the Cat and the Missing Cupcakes Game

Based on the Pete the Cat series and Pete the Cat and the Missing Cupcakes by James Dean comes Pete the Cat and the Missing Cupcakes- a Cooperative kids board game from University Games.

Recommended for ages 3 years and up, players move all 14 cupcakes from Grumpy toads tummy to Pete the Cat’s Birthday party table by performing activities on the present cards and game board spaces.

How to play:

To start each player chooses a character pawn and places it on one of the four corners of the game board. The youngest Pete the Cat and the Missing Cupcakes Gameplayer goes first by spinning the spinner and moving clockwise around the board, Players move around the board performing actions based on the space they land on.  There is a present spot, activity spot an grumpy toad spot.

The activity spots are based on animal, food, letters and music. If the player lands on an animal spot he or she has to name an animal and discriminate the sound that animal makes. Landing on an apple, you name a food. If you land on ABC you must think of a letter and name something that starts with that letter( difficult for younger players). When landing on the musical note spot you must sing the verse of a song.

Preschool Board GameseOnce an item has been named or action completed, it can not be done by another player. Once you have completed your action you take a cupcake from the toad’s stomach and place it on the table.

This is a cooperative game and there is no one winner. When all cupcakes are placed on the table the game is over and all players sing Happy Birthday to Pete the Cat.

Final thoughts on these Preschool Board Games:

Our daughter had fun playing with all three games and we had just as much fun playing with her. Through these three preschool games from University Games your child will learn important social skills, such as communicating verbally, waiting, taking turns, sharing, and enjoying interaction with others. Playing together offers the perfect time to demonstrate to your child(ren) how to be a good sport. Any or all of these games would make a wonderful Christmas gift for your preschooler.

About University Games

Founded in 1985, University Games has developed and manufactured over 500 games, puzzles, and children’s learning and activity sets. The company philosophy has always been to offer products that encourage fun, creativity, and imagination for kids, families and adults. The company offers a wide array of products under the University Games®, Briarpatch®, BePuzzled®, U-Create™, Great Explorations® and Front Porch Classics® brands.


Rose DesRochers is a Blogger, Writer, product reviewer and Founder of Today's Woman. Please feel free to contact me if you are a company with a product for me to review.
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2 thoughts on “Preschool Board Games for Kids

  1. My boys love playing board games with their Aunt Jen. She spends hours with them playing board games like CandyLand, Snakes and Ladders, Monopoly Junior, etc. I bet she would like to play these ones with her nephews.

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