Are Cooperative Board Games Good Team Building Activities for Kids?

Are you looking for some good team building activities for kids? Board games can be a great option for kids to play together, but often times kids end up arguing and crying, especially if there has to be one player who is the winner or the loser. 

Cooperative board games are a little different than traditional board games. Instead of individual players trying to win, in cooperative games, kids work as a team, together, to finish the game. Friends, a brother, sister, or a parent are no longer...MORE competing against each other.

While each player has a turn to make decisions and solve problems, they win or lose as a group. These fun games include ways for the team to win together. It could be racing a time clock, beating the sunrise, an erupting volcano, or even a "monster" who just wants to knock down their tower. 

Losing gracefully takes time and practice. Young children can still experience a win or a loss, without it always having to be at the expense of another person. 

Cooperative games are perfect for children in preschool, Kindergarten and their early elementary years, because many of these games do not require any reading.

Just like many family friendly board games, cooperative games are also educational. Children still practice important skills needed for game play, like taking turns, counting game spaces, and using their memory to match different pictures. Many games also encourage children to use their imagination to tell stories, learn about emotions, find ways to help others, and work together to make decisions.

While the team can still lose, the game is collaborative. There is not one person who is the winner or the loser. Just like team sports, the team wins or loses. Many kids feel comfort knowing that if they lose, they are not alone. Just like in every group there are different personalities that will also form, as some players are natural born leaders.

Just because kids are playing a cooperative game does not mean they will not experience frustration. There are plenty of times situations will not go their way, so do not think it will always be a happy, pleasant game, all the time. 

Kids need experience playing all different types of games. There are so many social, emotional and educational skills kids learn when playing group games and even single player games, too.  

Here are some great cooperative board games. Many of these games accommodate groups of children (2-6 players) and take only 15-20 minutes to play.

  • 01 of 10
    Stack Up Peaceable Kingdom Game
    Peaceable Kingdom

    In Stack Up, the goal of the team is to build a tower of 12 blocks using cool tools and completing challenges like quacking like a duck or standing on 1 foot. The group wins if they stack their entire tower before the "Smash Monster" gets to the end of the board game.

  • 02 of 10
    Dinosaur Escape Game Peaceable Kingdom
    Peaceable Kingdom

    Help all 3 dinosaurs toys to safety on Dinosaur Island using memory skills and strategy. Team members work quickly to move dinosaurs to their natural habitat and find the fern card that matches their dinosaur before the volcano puzzle is complete.

  • 03 of 10
    Friends and Neighbors Game
    Peaceable Kingdom

    While kids work cooperatively in Friends and Neighbors, they are also learning about different emotions. Players reach into the bag and remove a helping token. They match the helping token to a person on the game board and learn about empathy and other ways to help children who are feeling different emotions like being sad or scared.


  • 04 of 10
    Feed The Woozle
    Peaceable Kingdom

    Who does not like to feed a monster yucky, gross foods and snacks? Using fine motor coordination, kids use the spoon to Feed the Woozle 12 different silly foods before all the snacks are gone.

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  • 05 of 10
    Hoot Owl Hoot
    Peaceable Kingdom

    In Hoot Owl Hoot, in a simple color matching game, players move their Owls to the correct spot and back to the nest before the sun comes up.  


  • 06 of 10
    peaceable kingdom Mermaid Island game
    Peaceable Kingdom

    In Mermaid Island, players must work together to help all 3 mermaids swim to Mermaid Island, while they race against the Sea Witch. 


  • 07 of 10
    Lucky Dogs Dice Game
    Peaceable Kingdom

    Instead of a board game, Lucky Dogs is a cooperative dice game. While reading is not required, players match numbers on the dice to the tiles. Fill up the tile, turn it over and try and work together while taking turns to spell out "Lucky Dogs" before players run out of dice. 

  • 08 of 10
    Memory Palace Peaceable Kingdom
    Peaceable Kingdom

    This cooperative storytelling game inspires children to use their imagination and memory by creating stories about animals, while trying to avoid finding any Memory Monsters.


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  • 09 of 10
    Count Your Chickens
    Peaceable Kingdom / Amazon

    Oh no? Who let all the chickens out of the coop? In Count Your Chickens players work together to help mother hen maneuver the game board while returning the chicks to the nest. But don't spin the fox, a baby chick will escape back to the farm.

  • 10 of 10
    Race to the treasure game
    Peaceable Kingdom / Amazon

    In Race to the Treasure the goal is to create a path, from start to finish, to get to the treasure before the ogre. Along the way using your problem-solving skills to find a way to pick up the 3 different keys that are needed to open the treasure box. 

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.