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13 “Game Schooling” Tabletop Games

Welcome to the world of game schooling, where learning meets fun in the realm of tabletop games! Game schooling is a dynamic educational approach that harnesses the power of board games, card games, and other tabletop experiences to enhance learning for children and even adults. In this immersive environment, traditional subjects like math, science, history, language arts, and critical thinking come alive through interactive gameplay, fostering curiosity, collaboration, and strategic thinking. Tabletop games designed for game schooling offer hands-on experiences that actively engage players in problem-solving, decision-making, and creative thinking, seamlessly integrating educational concepts into enjoyable mechanics. Whether unraveling historical mysteries, solving math puzzles, or exploring scientific phenomena, game schooling transforms learning into an exciting adventure, where the joy of play and valuable educational outcomes merge around the table. This is a list compiled by Matt & Bubba from the Beard Bros. To hear their thoughts and experiences about these games, watch the video above!

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Einstein: His Amazing Life and Incomparable Science

Einstein: His Amazing Life and Incomparable Science allows players to embody Albert Einstein in four distinct periods of his life. These periods include:

  • Young Einstein: Experience Einstein’s rise from obscurity to becoming a renowned figure in physics.
  • Prime Einstein: Step into the shoes of the celebrated leader in modern theoretical physics and an international celebrity.
  • Globetrotting Einstein: Travel alongside Einstein to various corners of the world.
  • Wise Einstein: Embrace the role of an idealistic sage who transcended science and had a profound impact on our social values.

Each version of Einstein possesses a unique deck of Inspiration Cards based on real events from his life. These cards provide players with simple theories to complete. Drawing from the realms of physics, mathematics, chemistry, and philosophy, represented by distinct shapes, each Einstein strategically places tiles on a shared board to represent their ideas. Players earn points by completing their own theories, contributing to other players’ theories, and assisting in the completion of major theories from Einstein’s life.

Similar to how Albert Einstein surpassed the boundaries of science and became a globally recognized figure, the game Einstein emphasizes straightforward rules and quick gameplay, making it accessible to both gamers and non-gamers as an engaging strategy game.

Publisher: Artana
Players: 2-4
Age: 8+
Play Time: 15-45 Mins
Buy: Noble Knight Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Subatomic: An Atom Building Game

Subatomic: An Atom Building Game is a competitive deck-building game where players strive to construct a set of elements that are available for points.

At the beginning of the game, each player is equipped with an identical small deck of cards containing protons, neutrons, and electrons. These cards are utilized to enhance their current atom by revealing them as subatomic particles. The objective is to successfully create one of the available element cards. Alternatively, players can use their hand of cards to acquire more potent cards for future use. This involves playing face-down cards as energy and face-up cards as subatomic particles. Subatomic presents a distinctive twist on deck-building, incorporating a highly precise chemistry theme. The primary goal is to assemble elements for scoring points, while allowing for a variety of strategic approaches.

Publisher: Genius Games
Players: 2-4
Age: 10+
Play Time: 40-60 Mins
Buy: Amazon

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Rhino Hero: Super Battle

Rhino Hero makes a triumphant return, and this time the challenge isn’t just climbing the unsteady skyscraper but also engaging in intense battles among the four superheroes: Rhino Hero, Giraffe Boy, Big E., and Batguin. The question is, who will emerge victorious in these battles while disregarding the pesky hanging spider monkeys?

Rhino Hero: Super Battle is an exciting 3D stacking game filled with excitement and unpredictability.

Publisher: HABA
Players: 2-4
Age: 5+
Play Time: 10-20 Mins
Buy: Amazon

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

TEN

TEN is a thrilling game that combines push-your-luck and auction mechanics, making it perfect for the entire family! In this game, players draw cards one by one, aiming to accumulate as many as possible without surpassing a total value of TEN. If they go over, they bust!

To enhance their chances, players can take risks by drawing more cards and utilize their currency to purchase additional cards. The goal is to create the longest number sequence in each color. Excitement builds as valuable wildcards appear, leading players to compete in auctions to acquire them and fill gaps in their sequences.

Publisher: Alderac Entertainment Group
Players: 1-5
Age: 10+
Play Time: 15-30 Mins
Buy: Noble Knight Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Wingspan

Wingspan, developed by Stonemaier Games, is an engaging board game that falls into the competitive, medium-weight category. It revolves around cards and the construction of strategic engines. Elizabeth Hargrave is the brilliant mind behind its design, while the stunning artwork featuring over 170 birds is credited to Beth Sobel, Natalia Rojas, and Ana Maria Martinez.

In this game, players take on the roles of bird enthusiasts, which can include researchers, bird watchers, ornithologists, and collectors. Their primary objective is to explore and attract the finest birds to their network of wildlife preserves. Each bird introduced into the game unlocks a chain of potent combinations within one of the player’s habitats, known as actions. These habitats are crucial for growth and development and focus on various key aspects.

To progress in the game, players must strategically acquire food tokens, which are obtained through custom dice housed within a birdfeeder dice tower. They can also lay eggs using miniature representations in a range of colors. Additionally, players have the opportunity to draw from an extensive collection of unique bird cards and utilize them strategically to their advantage.

Ultimately, the winner of Wingspan is determined by the player who accumulates the highest number of points across four rounds of play.

Publisher: Stonemaier Games
Players: 1-5
Age: 10+
Play Time: 40-70 Mins
Buy: Stonemaier Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

PARKS

PARKS is a delightful tribute to the remarkable US National Parks, showcasing exquisite artwork from Fifty-Nine Parks.

In this game, players will immerse themselves in the role of two hikers embarking on a captivating journey through a variety of trails spanning all four seasons of the year. As these hikers traverse the trails, they will take strategic actions and gather precious memories of the awe-inspiring locations they visit. These cherished memories are represented by diverse resource tokens, such as mountains and forests. By collecting and organizing these memories into sets, players can exchange them to visit a National Park at the culmination of each hike.

Each trail encapsulates a distinct season, and with each passing season, the trails transform and extend, gradually becoming lengthier. The trail tiles are shuffled and rearranged between each season, introducing fresh challenges and possibilities in the next round. Acquiring resources can be a demanding task, particularly when another player is occupying the location you’re striving to reach. However, campfires offer the opportunity to share a space and experience with fellow hikers, fostering camaraderie. Additionally, canteens and gear can be employed to enhance resource access throughout the game. Balancing the construction of your engine with resource allocation for park visits presents an engaging challenge, but we believe you’re more than capable of tackling it. Welcome to the enchanting world of PARKS!

Publisher: Keymaster Games
Players: 1-5
Age: 10+
Play Time: 30-60 Mins
Buy: Noble Knight Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Drop It

Drop It is a captivating game that revolves around releasing circles, triangles, squares, and diamonds. The objective is to drop these pieces onto a vertical game board, aiming for optimal scoring positions. However, the game introduces an element of unpredictability as the tiles bounce around and may not land where you anticipate!

In each turn, the active player selects one of their pieces and drops it into a slot on the game board. Points are awarded based on the highest level the piece touches and any special locations it comes into contact with. However, if the dropped piece touches anything of the same shape or color, no points are earned! It adds a layer of challenge and strategic decision-making to the game. Additionally, certain pieces are prohibited from specific spots along the edge of the playing area, adding further complexity to the gameplay.

The rulebook of Drop It offers variant rules to accommodate simpler gameplay or introduce more variety from game to game, allowing players to customize their experience.

Publisher: Bernhard Lach
Players: 2-4
Age: 8+
Play Time: 30 Mins
Buy: Noble Knight Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Commissioned

Commissioned is a cooperative-style board game designed for 2-6 players. It incorporates a straightforward deck-building mechanism and offers an immersive gameplay experience within a one-hour timeframe. In this game, players assume the roles of early Christian Apostles and collaborate to nurture their faith decks, expand the church, gather the books of the New Testament, and triumph over persecution. It’s worth noting that prior knowledge of Christianity is not necessary to enjoy the game. Commissioned features five diverse scenarios that span the initial 150 years of church history, two difficulty levels for varying challenges, and even includes a thrilling one-vs-all variation.

Publisher: Chara Games
Players: 2-6
Age: 14+
Play Time: 60 Mins
Buy: Amazon

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Planet

Prepare to unleash the spark of life, as it surges from your hands and expands throughout the world. Shape the landscape by deploying majestic mountain ranges, sprawling deserts, vast oceans, and icy glaciers. Exercise wise control over your continents to cultivate environments that foster the emergence of diverse animal life. With skillful manipulation, you may succeed in creating the most densely populated planet imaginable!

In the game Planet, each player is entrusted with a planet core, a barren canvas waiting to be transformed. During each turn, players select tiles adorned with mountains, ice, forests, or deserts, strategically placing them onto their planets. By fulfilling specific conditions for the appearance of certain animals, players earn coveted animal cards as rewards. Success hinges on making astute choices and creating an ecosystem that harmoniously accommodates a multitude of species.

Publisher: Blue Orange (EU)
Players: 2-4
Age: 8+
Play Time: 30-45 Mins
Buy: Amazon

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Blokk!

Enter the world of Blokk!, where you step into the role of an Architect and embark on a quest to construct the ultimate cube. Prepare to put your logic and problem-solving skills to the test as you engage in The Build, a process that involves using the game’s rotating stand or player mats to create a perfectly formed cube.

With 36 distinct 3D colored blocks at your disposal, you, as an Architect, can select a single block during your turn. The game offers three different construct modes to choose from, allowing for solo play or cooperative and competitive experiences with friends and family:

  • Free Blokk!: Architects have the freedom to choose any block they desire on each turn.
  • Dice Blokk!: Architects roll a six-sided dice and play the block corresponding to the rolled color.
  • Card Blokk!: Architects draw cards from the deck and play the block indicated on their card each turn. This mode also serves as the versus variant, where Architects compete on their player mats, known as the Blue Print, in a battle to construct their own cube.

The game concludes when Architects have come as close as possible to achieving a flawless cube. The Architect with the fewest imperfections emerges as the victor in this thrilling competition of squares. Get ready to embrace the challenge and unleash your inner Architect in Blokk!

Publisher: Self-Published
Players: 1-4
Age: 5+
Play Time: 15-20 Mins
Buy: Not Yet For Sale (Follow the Kickstarter!)

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Watergate

Watergate is an intriguing game that immerses players in the historical events of the infamous scandal. One player takes on the role of a Journalist from the Washington Post, while the other embodies the Nixon Administration, with both sides possessing their own distinct decks of cards. The objective for the Nixon Administration is to accumulate enough momentum to survive until the end of the presidential term, while the Journalist strives to gather sufficient evidence to directly link two informants to the President. Naturally, the administration will use every means at its disposal to suppress and conceal any incriminating evidence.

History of Watergate included with the game!

Publisher: Frosted Games
Players: 2
Age: 12+
Play Time: 30-60 Mins
Buy: All Systems Go Games

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Dungeons & Dragons

(There are several versions of Dungeons & Dragons. The version we are recommending in this list is one published to help newbies jump into the game. -Ed.)

Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure Begins is an immersive cooperative board game that serves as an accessible introduction to the captivating world of D&D.

In this game, players have the opportunity to select their unique characters and embark on an epic journey through the enchanting lands of Neverwinter. Working together as a team, they must navigate through thrilling challenges, confront formidable monsters, and ultimately defeat the fearsome Boss monster that plagues the realm.

One of the notable features of the game is the rotating role of the Dungeon Master, which transitions from player to player with each turn. This ensures that everyone has a chance to contribute to the storytelling and shape the narrative of the game.

Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure Begins provides an exciting and streamlined experience for both newcomers and seasoned players, offering a taste of the fantastical adventures and camaraderie that are synonymous with the world of D&D.

Publisher: Hasbro
Players: 2-4
Age: 10+
Play Time: Varies
Buy: Amazon

Photo Credit: BoardGameGeek

Dominoes

Dominoes is a timeless tile game that has been enjoyed in various cultures worldwide. This particular description focuses on Western Dominoes, which typically employs a standard set of 28 “Double Six” tiles. It’s important to note that Chinese Dominoes utilize a different set of 32 tiles with distinct arrangements.

The game of Dominoes encompasses a diverse family of games played using the Western-style tiles. The standard set of tiles is based on the 21 unique combinations derived from rolling two six-sided dice. These combinations are complemented by seven additional “Blank” tiles, resulting in the familiar 28-tile “Double-Six” set. Variations such as “Double-Nine” (55 tiles) and “Double-Twelve” (91 tiles) are also popular among players. In fact, there are even “Double-Fifteen” sets with 136 tiles available.

Dominoes offers a multitude of game options to explore. The most widely recognized game is the Block game, which shares similarities across various regions of the world. Puerto Rican Dominoes, Latin Dominoes, and Cuban Dominoes are all versions of the Block game.

Additionally, there is a significant variety of Dominoes games belonging to the “Fives Family.” Examples include Five-up, All Fives, Sniff, and Muggins. These variations introduce the scoring element of making the sum of the ends of the dominoes equal a multiple of five.

Other popular Dominoes games include 42, ChickenFoot, and Mexican Train, each offering its own unique set of rules and gameplay mechanics.

Dominoes continues to captivate players of all ages, offering a wealth of enjoyable experiences and opportunities for strategic play.

Publisher: Various (Public Domain)
Players: 2-10
Age: 5+
Play Time: 30 Mins
Buy: Noble Knight Games





CEO + PRESIDENT + FOUNDER
Bubba is the CEO, President and Founder of LTN, host of the Free Play Podcast and the Church Nerds Podcast. He is also a full-time Nerd-Culture Missionary. Bubba, and his wonderful wife Anna, have 4 children who are pretty good most of the time. A communal gamer at heart who loves to get in and play games with other people #gameNightIStheRightNight
CPO + FOUNDER
Matt is the CPO & Founder of LTN as well as one of the hosts of the Free Play podcast. When not bustin’ his rump for LTN, Matt can be found, more than likely, playing Gloomhaven. He and his wife Erin have something like a billion kids, and they all love to be in the woods all the time. If you follow him on Instagram, everything he posts is a day behind. You’ve been warned.
DIR OF CONTENT & RESOURCES
Station Manager of LTN Radio and co-host of the "Nerd History Podcast" & the "Two Words Podcast". Matt is a third-generation radio station manager who has done pretty much every job in the radio industry. Matt is the father of two boys and a little girl. It's probably the best thing about him.

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