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7 Best Games for 3-Year-Olds (2022 Reviews)

best games for three year olds
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Keeping your 3-year-old busy and engaged can feel like a never-ending task, especially if you’re spending more time at home. While flashing, loud toys and mesmerizing TV shows can hold children’s attention for a period of time, they don’t necessarily support your little one’s growth and development. Instead of resorting to another episode of cartoons, these games designed for 3-year-olds are not only fun to play but can help encourage essential skills in your toddler. From increasing hand-eye coordination to building self-esteem, these games are made for little hands and minds and are fun for the entire family.

Best Games for 3 Year Olds

  • 1.

    (Best for memory — $)

    Why it’s great: The eeBoo Life on Earth Memory and Matching Game is designed to enhance your little one’s memory while also sharpening recognition and concentration skills. This game for 3-year-olds can be played independently or with up to four players, making this the ideal choice for screen-free play alone or with friends. Made from 90% recycled materials and printed with vegetable-based inks, this toddler game is a sustainable choice.

    Keep in mind: This game comes in a box to store all of its pieces rather than a space-saving bag.

    Good for: Toddlers who are working on sharpening their memory and concentration skills.

  • 2.

    (Best educational game — $)

    Why it’s great: This game for 3-year-olds can reinforce color learning, develop matching skills, and increase strategic thinking. Educational Insights The Sneaky, Snacky Squirrel Game is easy to play and understand, so you can spend more quality time having fun rather than reading directions. The box of this game doubles as storage so you can be sure not to lose any pieces.

    Keep in mind: The game may feel repetitive to older players as it is targeted at the younger toddler crowd.

    Good for: Parents who want to invest in games that help reinforce their toddlers’ academics.

  • 3.

    (Best for hand-eye coordination — $)

    Why it’s great: Filled with suspense and excitement, the Game Zone Honey Bee Tree Game requires careful, thoughtful movements, encouraging your toddler’s hand-eye coordination. This game tailored for 3-year-olds also develops your child’s strategic thinking and dexterity. A fun game to play with friends, toddlers can also practice taking turns, sharing, and working together while having a blast.

    Keep in mind: The setup for this game can be time-consuming.

    Good for: Toddlers who could use support developing their hand-eye coordination.

  • 4.

    (Best for encouraging activity — $$)

    Why it’s great: Striking feelings of nostalgia, The Original Mr. Bucket is a great option to encourage activity and movement in your little ones while also burning off excess energy. Toddlers can work on their aim by tossing colored balls into the bucket as he spins and whirls around, providing hours of fun. With simple, easy-to-follow directions and a limited setup, your 3-year-olds don’t have to wait to start playing.

    Keep in mind: The bucket does not move well on carpet and is best played on smooth surfaces, like hardwood floors or on a concrete patio.

    Good for: Toddlers who have lots of excess energy they need to burn off.

  • 5.

    (Best for color recognition — $)

    Why it’s great: A classic first game, Hasbro Gaming Candy Land is a simple way to introduce your 3-year-old to turn-taking and understanding directions. With sweet-filled illustrations and exciting cards to draw, your little one will love exploring the gumdrop forest and Kandy’s Castle. With bright, vivid colors, this board game is also a fantastic opportunity to reinforce color recognition.

    Keep in mind: This game uses a large number of pieces and may require repeated directions on how to play.

    Good for: Parents who want a game that doubles as exposure to color recognition.

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  • 6.

    (Best travel game — $)

    Why it’s great: With 20 double-sided study cards to play with, Mollybee Kids Toddler Scavenger Hunt Cards for 3-year-olds is compact enough to bring with you in the car, on an airplane, or in a hotel room. Featuring bold and whimsical artwork by Marion Billet, these scavenger cards are not only beautiful but also help your child learn and discover new vocabulary in whatever environment they may be in. The simple, easy-to-understand questions on each card increase young children’s confidence while also prompting them to explore the world around them.

    Keep in mind: Although sturdy, the cards are on the thinner side and may bend or tear if not stored and played with appropriately.

    Good for: Parents who want a game that can easily travel with their toddlers.

  • 7.

    (Best game for outside — $$)

    Why it’s great: The perfect game to help toddlers’ large motor development, the Toyk Outdoor Beanbag Toss Game includes a variety of games that will keep your little ones occupied all afternoon. Made from high-quality fabric that withstands the elements, this collection of outdoor games is both portable and collapsible, allowing you to easily store and transport it. With tossing games that build hand-eye coordination and encourage taking turns, these games for toddlers have numerous benefits.

    Keep in mind: It can take some practice to collapse the various playing boards for storage or travel.

    Good for: Parents seeking a game their 3-year-olds can use outside.

Best Overall

The eeBoo Life on Earth Memory and Matching Game is our overall top recommendation. It's the highest quality product we have found with the most affordable price making it the best value on our list..

FAQs about Games for 3-Year-Olds

  • 1. When is my toddler old enough to understand how to play cooperative games?

    You can begin introducing cooperative games as soon as your child can follow single-step directions, which is typically around two years of age. Though, most kids won’t be interested in more structured games until around three. Follow your child’s lead and choose a game that caters to his or her current interests and capabilities.

  • 2. How do I teach my 3-year-old to play new games?

    The easiest way to teach your toddler a new game is to model how it’s played, rather than simply speaking directions. Provide clear, simple language on how to play and be prepared to adjust the rules as necessary. Continue to prompt and exemplify appropriate play throughout the game.

  • 3. Which game is best for my toddler?

    Choose a game that caters to your child’s interests. For active, energetic tots, an outdoor activity game and those that require hand-eye coordination may be best. For toddlers developing language and academic skills, an educational game would probably be of most interest.

  • 4. When is the best time to play games with toddlers?

    The best time to play games with toddlers is when they’re able to focus and act appropriately. Opt to play games after everyone is fed and well-rested to avoid tantrums and meltdowns. Games are a great evening activity to wind down before bed, or for rainy days when going outside isn’t an option and your little ones need mental stimulation.

  • 5. What are the benefits of introducing different games to 3-year-olds?

    Different toddler games provide varying benefits for 3-year-olds. From increasing hand-eye coordination and building language to encouraging movement and developing academic skills, games designed for little kids can offer engaging, screen-free entertainment.

Conclusion

Games created for 3-year-olds are a fun and exciting way to introduce new skills to your toddler. This selection of games not only encourages movement and brain development but also helps prevent your child from spending too much time in front of a screen. From compact games that are perfect for in the car or on the go, to larger games made for the outdoors, these options for little kids can be enjoyed by the whole family. These games for 3-year-olds make the ideal gift for the little ones in your life.