Whiteboard games are by definition games you can play on a whiteboard, though you could use a chalkboard or sheet of paper instead. The biggest advantage of such games is that all you need is something to draw on and something to draw with. Here are some interesting whiteboard games for your kids.
Hangman is a quick, classic game. Identify the word or term you want them to guess. Write out the number of blanks and draw the hangman’s noose. Every time they guess the letter incorrectly, the hangman gets closer to death. Depending on the rules you use, the person may be in jeopardy, too, if they guess the whole word incorrectly.
One downside of this game is that it is hard to play if the person in front of the whiteboard doesn’t know how to spell the term correctly. And it isn’t much of an option for kids that can’t read yet. And a few people find the concept of a hanging offensive in and of itself.
Unscramblers are a good way to reinforce spelling. You can make the game accessible by choosing words your kids know how to spell or are learning to spell. You’re actually making it easier for them by providing the correct number of letters, too. For parents, creating the word unscramble without giving it away as they write it out. One solution is to use a word unscrambler tool like the one here to create lists of scrambled words. Then you just write out the letters to be unscrambled in their scrambled order. Just make sure you keep the answer key to reduce the potential fighting over what the answer is supposed to be.
Tic Tac Toe
Tic Tac Toe is fast. It is simple enough to include pre-literate children. You can make things more challenging by adding wildcard spaces, filled spaces or a 4×4 matrix. And the kids can play it without supervision, because the rules are easy enough for everyone to grasp. Given how little space it takes to play, you could run several games simultaneously on the same large whiteboard.
Pictionary / Drawing Charades
Charades is when you try to act out a word or concept and everyone else is supposed to guess what it is. Drawing charades or Pictionary is when you try to get them to guess the concept by drawing it out. The benefit of this approach is that it may be open to people who don’t have strong English skills as long as they can draw. The downside is that it can be hard for those who are bad at drawing, though you don’t have to be a great artist to play. Another problem is that some concepts are hard to illustrate, and it can be even more difficult if you don’t understand the concept. For example, imagine your four-year-old trying to explain the concept of a horseback rider or debt. And what a seven-year-old associates with Ohio or money may be different from what the adults are thinking.