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Inside: 20 of the very best board games for Preschoolers. Plus the Best Board Games for 3-year-olds, the best board games for 4-year-olds and 5-year-olds too! Updated for 2021 – 2022.

Can you guess what my son’s favorite time of the week is?

You might think it’s dessert time, or going to the park time, (and while he certainly does love these activities) his most favorite time is board game time.

We love trying out new board games.

Mindfulness Guide for Kids

So:

I’m here to give you the straight-up and recommend 20 of the best board games for preschoolers.

Now:

Having said that. Some of them are painful to you as a parent. I know, I get it.

But some of them are actually really fun!

These board games for 4-year-olds are sure to knock your socks off.

 (**Your kids will thank you. **)

Board Games for 4 Year Olds

Note: All board games with small pieces pose a choking hazard to kids (especially ages 3 and under) be sure to check the hazard warnings before making any purchases. Many of these games, even the ones specially designed for preschoolers contain small pieces. Please never leave your child unattended when playing games.

The Best Board Games for 4 Year Olds

Board Games for 4 Year Olds

1. The Ladybug Game

Help the ladybugs find their way home!

This Lady Bug board game was actually invented by a 1st grader and is an ideal first board game.

Kids will fall in love with the characters and enjoy the story of the Ladybug Adventure as they learn to count and read.

The parents’ choice foundation calls the Ladybug game “a colorful and lively little board game for beginner game players.”

This game uses colors, numbers, words, and symbols to help young kids catch on.

Highlights:

  • Interactive play
  • Introduction to math concepts
  • No reading required
  • Ages 3+
  • 2 to 4 players
  • Time to complete: 20 minutes

2. Operation

Your kid will love playing doctor in this classic game of Operation.

Cavity Sam is feeling a little sick, and kids will love to “operate” on him and make him feel better. Kids will try hard to avoid the buzz in this fun game of silly skills.

This one takes me back to my own childhood.

Now, who doesn’t love a little nostalgia?

This is a family classic (with an updated look and funny ailments). Learn more here.

Highlights:

  • Kids can play solo or with friends
  • Teaches eye-hand coordination
  • Recommended for 6 years and up, but really my son played at 4 years old and LOVED it! (Just beware of small parts around small kids)

3. Feed the Hungry Caterpillar Game

Transform your caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly with this game of counting, collecting, and building in this fun game of The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Children move colorful, 3D sculpted caterpillars from fruit to fruit, collecting unique butterfly pieces each time they stop to “eat”.

The first player to collect all five butterfly pieces wins the game. Get it here!

Children can practice decision-making by moving in any direction on the board. They mix and match beautiful butterfly illustrations to create a different work of art in every game.

Highlights:

  • For 2 to 4 players – ages 3 and up.
  • No reading required

4. Connect 4

Challenge a friend or parent to rule the grid in this classic Connect 4 game.

Do you go up, down, to the side, or diagonally? Start in the middle of the edge? The object is to get 4 discs in a row, and you win!

Hands down, one of the best board games for 4-year-olds!

Highlights:

  • For 2 players, ages 6 to 99 (but really any preschoolers can play this game)
  • Teaches strategy and counting
  • Fun for all ages (including you)
  • Disclaimer – not for children under 3, choking hazard on discs

Perfect for your next kiddo’s birthday party, fun family night, or engaging classroom activity. Look no further than this classic game with a twist! Gratitude Bingo is the PERFECT way to have fun and cultivate a growth mindset.

Gratitude Bingo Cards

5. Hi Ho Cherry-O

Preschoolers will have so much fun picking fruit to fill their basket in this fun game, Hi Ho Cherry-O.

And what’s great about this game is that they won’t even realize they are developing math skills with counting addition and subtraction.

Take turns picking pretend blueberries, cherries, and apples from your tree and putting them in your basket. The first to pick all the fruit wins.

Highlights:

  • Classic beginner’s game.
  • Simple gameplay for preschoolers.
  • Great gift idea for boys and girls
  • Ages 3 and up
  • For 2 to 3 players
  • Challenges math skills
  • Helps kids practice counting and numbers

If you are on the hunt to raise calm, confident, resilient kids, look no further. This toolbox is over $100 value for just $19 and includes hundreds of helpful printables!

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6. Candy Land

Candy Land should be every child’s first game, and it’s a colorful way for any preschooler to experience the joy of gameplay.

This game teaches color recognition and matching while reinforcing lessons of taking turns and being a gracious winner or loser.

Travel down the “magical” road to find sweet surprises! This adorable game features gingerbread men as movers, colored cards, and fun illustrations that kids love, with different destinations like Cookie Commons and the chunky Chocolate Mountain. Make your way to the castle to win!

Highlights:

  • Classic beginner game
  • No reading required
  • Great game for little ones

7. Kerplunk

Oh Kerplunk, how we love you!

Don’t let the marbles fall! This blast from the past (with a cool new look) will have you skillfully removing the sticks from the tube while dropping the fewest marbles possible.

I just bought Kerplunk for my five-year-old for Christmas and he loves it.

We each count our marbles at the end to see who dropped the most. We are still working on the gracious losing part, but all in all this game is fun and easy to use for a child.

Highlights:

  • Easy Set up
  • Ages 5 to 10
  • Counting
  • Contains marbles so choking hazard – not for kids under 3 years old

Mindfulmazing absolutely loves Pete the Missing Cupcakes Game! Rated A+ and lists this as one of the best board games for 4-year-olds.

8. Pete the Cat the Missing Cupcakes Game

Join Pete the Cat and his friends as they work together to get the missing cupcakes back from Grumpy Toad.

Players collect colorful cupcakes as they sing songs, act out physical activities, and identify favorite animals, foods, and words in this fun board game.

This is made by Briarpatch which is recognized worldwide for its well-designed preschool games and puzzles.

Highlights:

  • Little learners first game
  • Literacy – Kids make picture/word associations
  • Social Skills – children use simple strategies and decision making
  • Imagination – Kids express themselves without words
  • 2-4 players – ages 3 and up.

Mindfulness for Kids

9. Soggy Doggy Board Game for Kids

Soggy Doggy is the showering, shaking, doggy bathing game for kids and the entire family. Players roll the dice and move their playing piece around the game board, taking turns washing Soggy Doggy. But watch out! You never know when he will shake to dry off and you’ll get wet!

The real fun starts (and kids love this) when your pet gets wet! If you land on a space with a ‘paw’ you get to pump water from the shower to wash Soggy Doggy. If you land on a space with a ‘facet’ you get to turn the tap to see what happens next.

Highlights:

  • An action-packed suspense-filled board game
  • For 4+, 2 – 4 players.
  • Warning choking hazard, not for kids under 3.

10. Dr. Seuss Matching Game

Play the classic game of matching a memory with everybody’s favorite Cat in the Hat

Flip over tiles and find colorful pictures of familiar friends.

Collect the most pairs to win.

Highlights:

  • Matching
  • Memory Skills
  • Turn-taking and playing together
  • Not for children under 3 – choking hazard

If your kiddo suffers from BIG emotions, you’ve just gotta check out this life-saving tool, the Anger Rescue Kit for Kids. With over 60 pages this will become your new go-to for helping your child develop appropriate coping strategies.

Anger management for kids

11. Hungry Hippos

Have a chomping good time with the hippo-feeding Hungry Hippos game.

Are you ready to join the feed frenzy? Release all the marbles onto the game base, and then start chomping. Move fast, the player whose hippo chomps the most marbles wins.

Highlights:

  • For kids who just want to have fun and be a little wild
  • Ages 4+ – 2 to 4 players
  • Small pieces – not for kids under 3

12. Wildcraft a Herbal Adventure

A Cooperative board game that explores healing herbs. It teaches 25 important edible and medicinal plants and their uses in first aid situations.

Players learn about connecting the icon on the challenge or trouble cards with the icons on the plant cards.

Players move up the mountain to huckleberry patch and get back to grandma’s before nightfall.

It’s beautifully illustrated, nature-based, educational. Don’t miss out! Learn More here.

Highlights:

  • No reading required
  • Ages 4+

13. Dinosaur Escape Game

Try to get all your dinosaurs’ safety to Dinosaur Island before the volcano erupts. Work together to move the dinosaur around the board. Everyone plays together to get the dinosaurs to safety.

Little boys love dinosaurs, and The Dinosaur Escape Game will not disappoint.

Highlights:

  • Teaches kids simple strategy
  • How to take turns
  • No winners or losers
  • 2 to 4 players Ages 4+

If you love board games, you might want to check out our epic guide: The best board games for elementary-age children.

If you are looking for some fun family night ideas, look no further, we’ve listed 45 fantastic traditions to keep the family connected all year long.

14. Hoot Owl Hoot

This is an award-winning, color-coded cooperative matching game! Hurry Owls! It’s time to go home.

Players will work together to help the owls fly back to their nest before the sun comes up. This is a co-operative game meaning everyone works together and no one is left out.

Co-operative games foster non-stressful play situations, emotional development, shared decision making, creative problem solving, a sense of community, positive self-esteem, playfulness, and much more.

Kids will work together and play together, and they play for FUN! Grab Hoot Owl Hoot now!

Highlights:

  • Learn simple strategy
  • Learn social skills
  • No reading required
  • For 2 to 4 players, ages 4 and up.
  • Frustration-free packaging
  • Winner of seven awards

15. Chutes and Ladders

Be the first to reach to top: Players scramble to the top of the game board without slip-sliding down. Land on good deeds to climb ladders, but watch out for the chutes

Children can practice counting and number recognition as they travel along the gameboard to get to the top.

Highlights:

  • CLASSIC BEGINNER GAME: Do you remember playing Chutes and Ladders when you were a kid. Introduce new generations to the classic gameplay of this kids’ board game for 2 to 4 players
  • NO READING REQUIRED TO PLAY: For kids ages 3 and up, Chutes and Ladders can be a great game for kids who haven’t learned how to read yet
  • CLASSIC UP AND DOWN GAME FOR PRESCHOOLERS: Spin the spinner and move the pawn up the ladders and down the chutes. Chutes and Ladders is a classic game that children enjoy playing over and over

16. Sequence for Kids

Sequence for Kids, uh-huh, amazing.

This game does not require reading for your little ones.

Players play an animal card from their hand and place a chip on a matching animal space on the board.  Each card is pictured twice on the game board, so players will need to choose wisely as they try to get 4 in a row.

Grab this classic here.

Highlights:

  • Class game of Sequence made just for kids
  • Great for kids ages 3 and up.
  • Helps kids develop strategy building skills and logical thinking skills
  • Wild cards add excitement to the game
  • Reading is not required

17. My Feelings

My Feelings Board game is another game we added to the collection at Christmas. If you’ve read any articles on my blog you’ll know that my son suffers from BIG emotions, so I thought what better way to help him understand his big emotions than through play.

This game is fantastic for helping little ones learn and express their emotions. You’ve got to add this one to the collection.


18. Let’s Go Fishin’

Let’s Go Fishin’ teaches hand-eye coordination as players use their mini fishing poles to try to catch the most fish.

With a rotating pond and hungry fish that open and close their mouths, this classic kids’ game provides fast-paced fishing fun that will lure kids into playing over and over again. 

It’s the perfect board game for 4-year-olds.

Highlights:

  • Fast-paced gameplay: features a rotating pond and fish that open and close their mouths
  • Object: players use mini fishing poles to try to catch the most fish
  • Fine motor skills: gameplay helps develop hand-eye coordination
  • Bonus: this top-selling classic game includes a lucky Ducks make-a-match card game!
  • Great gift: for 1-4 players, ages 4 and up

19. Guess Who

I simply adore the Guess Who Class game.

Beloved 1980’s version of the classic mystery face game is back! I remember playing this game right up until I was a teenager.

There’s a mystery person on your opponent’s card. Can you find the matching face in the crowd? Start with your game full of silly-looking characters. Then ask the right questions to eliminate the wrong faces! Does your person have blue eyes? Is your person wearing a hat? Once you’re down to a face or two – solve the mystery by guessing who! If you’re the first to identify your opponent’s mystery person, you win.

Highlights:

  • Ages 6+
  • 2 players

20. Zingo

It’s not just bingo. Zingo is a matching game that encourages pre-readers and early readers alike to match the pictures and words to their challenge cards. The Zinger dispenses tiles and fun as young minds quickly race to be the first player with a full card and yell “ZINGO.”

With two levels of play, this matching game builds language skills through fast-paced play.

Final thoughts on board games for 4 year olds

I’m sure with this gigantic list of games you are sure to find something your preschooler or toddler will love!

Board games are such a wonderful way to build skills, all while having fun!

Tell me below, which one is your favorite?

Board Games for 4 Year Olds

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2 Comments

  1. Hi
    Thank you for your beautiful collection of board games. I have a 3yr old and a 5yr old and the found one favourite of ours is the Peaceable Kingdoms Smoosh and Seek Treehouse. Both kids love it and I have already bought it for my 4yr old niece. As a mum and a primary school teacher I would recommend this one to any parent. I love the working together concept.
    Kind regards. 🙂

    1. Tina Williamson says:

      Oh thank you for the recommendations! I’ll have to check those out 🙂

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