During an impromptu visit to our new favorite store, Five Below, we found a version of Monopoly that we’ve not been privy to before called Monopoly Here and Now. In this version, the objective is to be the first player to fill up your passport to win. Of course we can’t just play the game for the sake of playing it, we have to make it a learning experience.
With three children varying in age, we are able to make this educational for each one in a different way. There’s always the math with the money, but what about simple addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division? Just rolling the dice was an easy way for the elementary aged children to practive their math facts on the fly. For example, whenever a player rolled the dice, our first/second grader had to add the sum or sutract the difference between the two rolled dice. Our third/fourth grader had to either multiply or divide the numbers rolled.
Then, of course, there’s the geographical aspect of this game. Each space (and the action cards) is related to a U.S. city. This is a good way to practice states and even learn fun facts about each one. During the game, stop for a second and Google search that city to learn more about it. As added motivation, a house rule of ours is if you don’t know what state the property is in, you pay double rent (if owned) or you lose the opportunity to buy an unowned city. Monopoloy Here and Now also provided lessons in patience, humility, strategy, attention to detail, and general sportsmanship.
Overall, we had a great time playing the game and enjoying one another’s company. Can’t wait to see what house rules we come up with next time!