Some observations following the purchase and playing of several new games with my kids (as a reminder, they are 5 and 2 3/4):
* Preschoolers have the attention spans of gnats. Gnats with ADD.
* Games have come a long, long way since I was a kid.
* Neither of my kids cares one iota about winning or losing. I have no intention of introducing the concept at this point...it's much easier not to deal with the inevitable drama. I am guessing that this is exactly opposite of how my husband would approach this, given that he lives to win. Related: I sort of hate playing games with him. We can just about get through a (tense) round of a knowledge-based game, but I flat refuse to play Monopoly with him.
* Both kids are TOTAL CHEATERS. This makes me laugh because they are not cheating to win, just to...well, I'm not sure exactly.
* They are surprisingly good with turn-taking, as long as I am directing the flow of the game.
* I started out just managing rounds of the games between the two of them and then it occurred to me, I could...play with them! Not that I find preschool games particularly riveting, but it is slightly more tolerable to play along rather than just nag them through completion.
* I am instituting a No-More-Than-Three-Games-in-a-Row rule. This is partly so they don't get bored with them too quickly, but mainly to preserve my sanity.
* I had no idea how difficult it would be to introduce the concept of rolling a dice. I'm not even talking about understanding the subsequent moving of spaces or whatever, just the rolling itself. Pace can roll a dice like he's been playing craps since he was two (yes, I know the singular is die but I just don't like the way it sounds), but Brighton just does NOT get it. We have this photo safari game that requires rolling a dice and moving around a board. She can't seem to let go of the idea that she needs to get the dice to land in a particular place on the board. At this point I've harped on about "just letting! it! go!" long enough that she's developed a sort of Dice Rolling Paralysis. I hope I haven't scarred her for life.
* As far as activities go, I think the game genre rates well above Chase Me/Tickle Me games, but definitely not as high as coloring. I do love me some coloring.
(In case you're curious, the four games we have now are: the photo game I've linked to before (9/10), Pop-Up Pirate (7/10), Monkeying Around (8/10) and Hi-Ho Cherry-O, which we haven't played yet)