The Board Game Family: Reclaim your children from the screen
Author and educationalist Ellie Dix has been playing board games since she can remember. She’s an advocate and an aficionado.
In her persuasive, engaging book, she argues that board games are the perfect antidote to today’s many digital distractions. As well as a fun, effective means of opening lines of communication in families with sometimes diffident teenagers.
The Board Game Family by Ellie Dix provides a roadmap to integrating board gaming into family life, filled with irresistible ways to engage even the trickiest of teenagers and manage game nights with flair.
Many parents feel as if they are competing with screens for their children’s attention. As their kids get older, they become more distant – leading parents to worry about the quality of the already limited time they share. They pine for tech-free time in order to reconnect, but don’t know how to shift the balance.
In The Board Game Family, Ellie Dix aims to help parents by inviting them and their families into the unplugged world of board games. The benefits of board games are far-reaching. Playing games improves memory formation and cognitive abilities, boosts critical thinking, develops interpersonal skills and refines our problem-solving and decision-making.
With these benefits in mind, Ellie explains how parents can unleash the potential of those dusty boxes at the back of the cupboard and become teachers of outstanding gamesmanship – equipped to navigate the unfolding drama of competition, thwart the common causes of arguments and tears, and bind together a happier, more social family unit.
School leaders may also find this book helpful in supporting parental engagement. Find out about how to become a Board Game School.
“Finally got some time to read #TheBoardGameFamily book by @EllieDixTweets. Lovely book by a mom that spans a LOT of topics incl. general hobby, content, obstacles w/ teens (ie phones) & solutions, sportsmanship, house rules, & a games glossary. Really nice read & resource… I REALLY liked it. The good loser/winner section really spoke to me (as that’s a struggle I have with the 7yo right now.) And I was impressed with the games listings. If I was new to the hobby, a resource like that would be hugely valuable in navigating what’s available.” Suzanne Sheldon, The Dice Tower.
“This book is all about, you guessed it, board games. It talks about how board games can bring a family together and different family tradition you can have with board games.The first few chapters are the positives about playing board games as a family – spending more time together, less screen time, etc. And how to start a board game collection. There are plenty of tips in the book on how to change the rules of the game to suit your family needs. For example, if you playing with young children or someone with learning disability. There are tips on how to make the games unique to your family … There’s advice on what to do if a member of your family doesn’t want to play, or there is arguments or sore losers. There are lot’s of little tips that I myself as quite a big board game player will be taking away and using. There is also a list of board game suggestions too. Overall, this book is great if you are thinking about starting a family board game night. I would recommend it to people with young kids and teens a like. You can also gain a lot from reading this book even if you don’t have children.” Natasha Mairs, SerenityYou
“The Board Game Family: Reclaim Your Children From The Screen is a fantastic ‘how-to’ for parents wanting to bring their kids back into the living room, away from their phones and back into family life together… There is a great toolkit for getting started, even if you haven’t been a game player yourself. Ellie suggests ways to bring games into your family’s life, and which games will be a good starting point. The book covers ideas for setting the scene, fitting the mood and making games night a bit special without huge effort… There are tips for when you have situations such as cheating or fights, and how to manage games night. If you realise your game will go on far longer than someone’s tolerance for it, sort that out… The Board Game Family is a great book and reading it I just wanted to play games! It really gives any reader the confidence to go for it, and adapt rules, winning conditions or set time limits whenever it suits the players. It’s a brilliant springboard for parents wanting to reclaim their relationship with their pre-teen, teenage and young adult children.” Jenny from TheBrickCastle.com
“I love this book! Every parent should own a copy of The Board Game Family – not only to ensure that they don’t get caught up in a digital device-smashing moment, but also to help their children be less digitally inclined. It is an incredibly practical resource, providing an in-depth analysis of various board games, party games and card games, as well as an exploration of the pitfalls to avoid and the benefits derived from board gaming. If you want to bring more joy and connectivity into your family, and save your children from obsessing with their online world, Ellie Dix’s The Board Game Family is essential reading.” Elaine Halligan, The Parent Practice
“Ellie Dix leaves no stone unturned in The Board Game Family; she gives in-depth explanations about the pros and cons of board games (both of specific games and in general). She discusses the potential problems that may arise and details the possible solutions. Her chatty, engaging style is sure to encourage parents to experiment with her recommendations – especially those parents who are struggling with monosyllabic teens who think that playing board games is terminally uncool. As a parenting consultant, I frequently advise my clients to play board games, card games and pencil and paper games as a family. From now on, I will also recommend that they read this book.” Noël Janis-Norton, Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting and Teaching
“The Board Game Family shares lots of real-world tips on how parents can tear their teens away from tech and enjoy quality family time. If all you get from your kids is a grunt before they disappear to their rooms, this book is full of ideas to get you all talking, laughing and playing together again.” Anita Cleare, Thinking Parenting
“Written with humour and real-life experience, The Board Game Family is packed full of great ideas and is bursting with practical suggestions around playing games with kids of all ages. Obviously a board game fan, Ellie enthuses you with her knowledge about the benefits of playing board games and empowers you to reclaim your children from their screens and create fun memories with them that will last a lifetime. The Board Game Family will help you make board gaming, whether it be in the form of quick 20-minute fillers or full-on gaming marathons, a natural and easy part of your family life.” Sue Atkins, ITV parenting expert