Let’s be honest: it is more important than ever to learn about environmental awareness. The reason why I wrote this article is quite simple and straight forward. A friend of mine is a school teacher in Norway, and for his English classes he wanted to create a fusion between English teaching & climate change studies.
Therefore, he asked me if I could find any relevant board games that can teach the kids both English and provide some environmental awereness.
Guess what? I succeeded.
After browsing through hundreds of board games on Amazon, I found some that would be a great fit for someone that would have fun and at the same time learn more about our planet.
Please note that these board games are both suitable for kids as well as adults.
In a hurry? Here’s my top picks
Category: Endangered animals & Reforestation
There are two board games that I would like to recommend in this category: Chalk and Chuckles + Photosynthesis game.
#1: Chalk and Chuckles Claim and Save game
This game is all about saving the most endangered animals on the planet. Within the game, you have five different categories of animals: all being given a number between 1 and 5. The higher the score, the more engangered they are.
Youtube video: Review & How to play
Yeah, I know…not the best video. However, the rules are quite simple as the game is made to teach 6-12 years old how to best take care of the animals. The educational part of the game is definitely better than the “fun part” of the game. I will be that honest. However, I think this board game will be able to keep kids busy for a while if they are interested in or fascinated by animals (which many of them are).
#2: Photosynthesis game
Frankly, I was afraid that this game would seem to be a bit “narrow”. I mean, do you picture yourself a lot of 10 year old kids playing a game where the main goal is to plant as many trees as possible?
I did not.
However, after doing some extensive research, I found out that the game wasn’t just educational, but also very fun. This is not something I write in order to make you order the “Photosynthesis strategy” game. It is actually really cool. I was lucky enough to be able to play it with my friend before it was given to the school, and I believe that I learned more about biology in those two hours compared to what I did during my 10 years in elementary school…
Youtube video: How can you play Photosynthesis?
There were several Youtube videos on this topic, but I found this one to be the best:
Category: Global Warming
Game: Polar Eclipse Board GameTable could not be displayed.
There are many board games that have tried to conquer the world of “global warming classrom education”. In my opinion, only one have really succeeded. “Polar Eclipse” is a fantastic game that really isn’t as complicated at it might seem like. When I clicked through their Amazon listing, I have to admit that I became a bit skeptical about the quality of the game (guys, if you read this: please make a better description on Amazon!).
The only thing that annoyed me about this game is that it contains so many different elements. However, once you have played it once, it is quite easy to understand the rules. I will definitely say that this is the best game for people above the age of 8 to learn more about climate change.
Youtube video on how to play
No Youtube video available, but I will recommend the official Polar Eclipse website to read how the game is played.
Climate change board games pricing
- Below 19.99: These games are often simple and sometimes “too easy”. If some board game manufacturer needs to price their game way below 20 USD, it’s something wrong. However, if it’s a simple quiz game – the low price range could be justified as these games are quite cheap to develop and manufacture.
- Between 20 and 39.99 USD: This is where most of the games are sold.
- More than 40 USD: Most board games in this price range are quite advanced. Also, they’re not for kids. I have yet to see an “environmental board game” that is meant for kids’ education that costs more than 40 USD. If you ever come across one, feel free to let me know in the comment section below.
As a general rule, it’s difficult to say what a board game should cost. If you buy the old traditional board games, like Chess or Monopoly, you can get them for between 10 USD and 100 USD. It all comes down to the complexity of the game as well as the quality on the board and materials.
There are some “must-haves” for a board game that will educate the young generation about climate change & global warming.
This is, in my opinion, the most important part. The kids need to learn some new information every time they play.
You might not be aware of this, but kids are extremely triggered by competition. If the game has a “team vs team” structure, they are much more eager to try to win.
It’s not only about learning new stuff. If the game didn’t have a “fun” aspect to it, you could just as well show the kids some Youtube movie or ask them to read a book.
NOT TOO LONG
This is something that most people are not too concerned about. However, they should be.
In the times of mobile phones and computer games, most kids do not have the patience to play board games for many hours straight. That’s just not going to happen. All the board games recommended in this article can be finished within an hour and a half.
Are there any other board games that should be mentioned?
I have been through them all, and I would not recommend something that I haven’t tested personally. Unfortunately, I am only giving you three good options in this article. However, that also means that you won’t be buying something that isn’t working very well for you.
My recommendations are, hands down, the three board games I bought for my local school in Norway. Based on the feedback I got, these are all games that I can recommend to my readers on Sustainability Matters.
If you got any questions or feedback, please let me know in the comment section below. Also remember to let me know if you have experience with any other (good) climate change/environment board games – and I will make sure to update the article once I have confirmed they are good! 🙂