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10 Arabic Games for Surviving Winter Break With Kids

posted on: Dec 7, 2016

BY: Nadine Ismail/Ambassador Blogger

Winter break is around the corner and you are probably thinking about ways to keep the kids busy indoors. You might also be thinking about gifts for the holiday season. Chances are that you are feeling a bit guilty about not including anything in the Arabic language in your plan. Fear not! I am here to help you, I have been busy testing games and toys so you don’t have to.

Here is my ultimate list of Arabic-language games for surviving winter break. Products are listed from easiest to most difficult based on age groups. All these games will surely keep your children busy for quite a while. Moreover, they can learn lots of new things, so maybe you’ll even hear “please, help me to do my homework” less often.

1. Playdough Mats from Arabic Playground

3-8 years old

This product can be purchased online and gets delivered immediately. Toddlers and younger kids will enjoy forming the shapes of the letters in play dough, while learning the letters and working on their fine motor skills. Here are more ways you can play with these mats.

2. Alphabet Wooden Puzzle 

3-8 years old

My daughter used this game on a daily basis. This is a great game that teaches the kids the alphabet shapes and more importantly the order of the letters. We love to pair this game with the alphabet songs that I wrote about in a previous article.

3. Arabic Alphabet Blocks from Maktabatee

3-8 years old

These blocks can be used in so many ways because they show the letters in all their forms (initial, medial, and final), numerals, and a geometric pattern. Kids can practice putting the letters together to form their names, date of birth, and favorite food! 

4. The Zoo from Dourak

5 and older

This game is perfect for having fun while learning the names of the animals in their singular and plural forms, asking questions, and answering in yes or no. The game is fully transliterated, so no knowledge of Arabic script is needed to play. The cheat sheet contains easy question and answer patterns so players with little to no Arabic understanding can join in. I highly recommend it for families that have a member who does not speak Arabic, as it is inclusive. I also love that this game can be used in so many ways, depending on the age and fluency of the players. It is the gift that keeps on giving!

5. Game: Shapes, Colors, Lines and Words from Asala

5 and older

This game keeps the kids playing all day long as it covers the shapes, colors, words, sizes, sequence, lines, and reading. Again, this is a great investment as it offers different ways of playing for different age groups, and most of its components can be used in different languages.

6. Arabic Alphabet Puzzle

5 and older

This game help kids match a letter with a word that begins with it, helping to build their vocabulary. What I love about this game is that it can be played by one or more players. It will keep your kid busy for a while.

7. Word Web from Dourak

8 and older

This game is designed for building the vocabulary. Every card contains a key word and four related words. All words are fully vowelized, and the Englsih transliteration are also provided for the key words. These cards are great for playing Taboo and Pictionary, as well as students who need to strengthen their spelling skills.

8. The Plural Game from Dourak 

8 and older

This game is for the advanced learners, as it focuses on the root system of words and highlights the singular and plural patterns of common nouns. This game is the perfect for teenagers and adults who have outgrown games meant for younger audience. 

9. Human, Animal, Thing (لعبة إنسان حيوان شيء )

8 and older

I used to play this game all the time in Lebanon as a child. The good news is that you only need a pen and paper, and it can be played with as many players as you want. This game is a wonderful way to utilize all the words and vocabulary the kids have learned from the previous games. Check out my little video on how to play the game. You can use the free Alphabet from Arabic Playground to pick the letters.

10. Charades (من غير كلام)

8 and older

Divide the players into teams and have a list of words written on separate papers. This is a good time to pick words that your kids have learned, which they have to act it without using any words or speaking. The team that guesses the most words wins. This game is very popular during Ramadan, too.

Nadine Ismail of Reinventing Nadine is a blogger living in the Bay Area in California. Nadine shares on her blog and Instagram account her recipes, crafts and embroidery tutorials, and parental advice, especially raising a bilingual child.

Find more articles on learning and teaching Arabic by Nadine Ismail here.