Tag Archives: monopoly

Fun Indoor Activities for Kids During the COVID-19 Quarantine

By Tracey Dowdy

How upside-down is your world right now? Is that the dumbest question you’ve been asked in a long time? If it’s only the latest in a string of ridiculous questions, you’re probably quarantined with kids. 

Regular quarantine updates with quotes from my niece, “If you were a dog, what kind of dog would you be?” or my friends, “One of my kids is crying because the other one flushed the toilet before they got to ‘see,'”or “SOS! My kids caught me eating their Easter candy I bought early and now they’re asking questions I don’t want to answer,” make me giggle and remind me to find the funny in a very un-funny situation. 

If you’re looking for ways to inject a little happy into your day, these activities can break up the boredom, redirect those Easter candy questions, and help you shift gears faster than the TP is disappearing off shelves. 

  • Take the Meet Your Neighbors Challenge created by Rachel Rock:  At a time when so many are feeling disconnected and a little lost, reaching out – while social distancing – is a great idea. Rock suggests “Write a note to the people who live beside you, in your apartment building, or up the road. Introduce yourself and give them something to write back about by asking about their favorite books, movie, food, or the most beautiful view they have ever seen. If you’re able, let them know how they can help – maybe you pray a lot. Maybe you can go to the grocery store. Maybe you can walk dogs. Maybe you have a hobby you can teach or things you can lend to help pass the time. Deliver those notes and see what happens!”
  • Create an Art Crawl. If your home has a driveway, help your kiddos create chalk art with encouraging messages. No driveway? No problem – use your windows as gallery space and post your children’s art, pictures of your pet, or more of those encouraging messages. Encourage your neighbors to do the same so even though you may not be able to leave the shelter of your home, you can still be encouraged by art. 
  • Have a virtual family dinner. Miles away from friends and family? Use any of the myriad of streaming services – Facebook Messenger, Google Hangouts, Zoom, Jitsi, FaceTime, Skype – to have dinner together. Plop that normally forbidden device in the middle of the dinner table, and catch up with each other’s day. 
  • Host a movie party. Netflix has created an app that enables people to chat via text through a separate window on their computer while streaming content via Netflix Party. Once you’ve downloaded the app, open a video within Netflix, click the NP icon, then click start the party.  You’ll be given a custom URL that you can share that URL with friends and others and then can chat about whatever your group is watching in real-time.
  • Set up an online playdate. Your kids don’t have to play a video game, though of course there’s plenty of options out there. Sites like Pogo have a myriad of games kids can play together, including Monopoly – perhaps not the best choice in these stressful times. You can play old school favorites like Yahtzee Party and Scrabble. Hop over to Tabletopia to play Chess or one of the other 800+ game they offer, or head to PlayingCards for a family-friendly version of Cards Against Humanity, GoFish, Crazy Eights, or CheckersFamily favorite Uno even has its own site. 

Tracey Dowdy is a freelance writer based just outside Washington DC. After years working for non-profits and charities, she now freelances, edits and researches on subjects ranging from family and education to history and trends in technology. Follow Tracey on Twitter.

Classic Games You Can Play on Your Smartphone

By Tracey Dowdy

Whether you’re feeling nostalgic and want to introduce your kids to the classic games of your childhood or just looking for a way to pass the time while you wait in line, these classic games have been re-mastered for your smartphone and tablet. As an added bonus, the app versions offer the features of the original game and they’re usually less expensive.

Board Games

Monopoly is actually banned in my house because my husband is ruthless, but for everyone else the app version of the game is a lot of fun. The free version offers everything you loved about the original board game or you can upgrade with in-app purchases to customize your gaming experience. (iPhone – $0.99, iPad – $4.99, Android – $1.99)

Mad Libs takes the original game and adds a soundtrack and sound effects.  Play solo or with a partner; save your story or share it with friends. The app includes 21 free stories, with new stories being added all the time. (Free with in-app purchases – iPhone, iPad, Android)

The Game of Life offers all the fun of the original but adds 3D graphics and music from your music library. Pass and Play with up to six friends and track your progress with the Life journal. (iPhone – $0.99, iPad – $4.99, Android – $0.99, Windows Phone – $2.99)

Scrabble allows you to play solo against the computer, challenge friends on Facebook, or choose both as you can play multiple games simultaneously. Use the “Teacher” feature to improve your skills, the in-game dictionary and word list or the Best Word feature to see your highest scoring word option. (Free – iPhone, iPad, Android)

Yahztee lets you play the classic dice game solo or with up to three friends. Choose different modes of play and save your game to come back to at a later time. (iPhone – $0.99, iPad – $2.99, Windows Phone – $2.99)

Video Games

What list of classic games would be complete without Pac-Man? The app version includes the original 1980 maze, plus an additional 9 mazes to challenge you. Use your touchscreen for swipe controls or use the online joystick to avoid the ghosts and munch power pellets. (iPhone, iPad, Android – Price varies based on version of game purchased)

Tetris Blitz is old-school Tetris with drag and drop or one-touch features to help you get the highest score possible in the two minute time limit. Play alone or in time-limited battles against online players. In-app purchases allow you to power up your game and earn higher scores. (Free with in-app purchases – iPhone, iPad & Android)

Tomb Raider Pack featuring Lara Croft lets you fight bad guys, solve puzzles and search for treasure in Atlantis and the pyramids of Egypt. The app version includes the original 1998 version of the game, plus two additional chapters. (iPhone, iPad – $4.99)

Secrets of Monkey Island brings back Guybrush Threepwood in his quest to become an infamous pirate of the Caribbean. Play the classic or Special Edition versions and take advantage of the hints to play better than ever. The original cast is back for the voice overs, and the score has been re-recorded and digitally re-mastered so the sound is as authentic as the graphics. (iPhone – $2.79, iPad – $4.99)

Sonic the Hedgehog is back! Race across seven zones to collect rings and best your enemies to save the world and defeat Dr. Eggman. The app version offers the option to play the original game or to play as Sonic’s friends Tails and Knuckles. Re-mastered sound and graphics means play is better than ever and new “Time Mode” brings a whole new challenge. (iPhone, iPad, Android – $2.99)

If the fast-pace of the game wasn’t enough, the soundtrack by Bad Religion and the Offspring could hook you on Crazy Taxi. Time is money and it’s up to you to race through the streets and rack up the most fares in 3, 5 or 10 minute game plays. (iPhone, iPad, Android – $4.99)

Tracey Dowdy is a freelance writer based just outside Toronto, ON. After years working for non-profits and charities, she now freelances and researches on subjects from family and education to pop culture and trends in technology. Follow Tracey on Twitter.

6 Classic Games You Can Play on Your Smartphone

By Robyn Wright

While we love finding new games to play, there is still something to be said for the classics we grew up with. Many of the games we played as children continue to be popular, mostly because they are fun to play and we usually learn a little something in the process.

While you can still find many of these classic games in their original formats, they are also now available as downloadable apps for our smartphones and tablets. Here are a few of the classics reinvented for the mobile age.


monopolyTNYou probably spent hours playing the Monopoly board game when you were a child. Now you can play this family favorite on-the-go via your mobile device. Roll the dice, take a ride on the Reading Railroad, put hotels on Boardwalk, and try and avoid going to jail. The classic Monopoly game tokens are also included.

iOS – $0.99
Android – $1.99
Windows Phone – $2.99

Mad Libs

mad-libsTNA hysterically funny game and great for learning correct grammar, as you need to know nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, etc. You can also add your own photos and images, use voice recognition to enter your words, and even share your stories on your favorite social networks.

iOS – free with in-app purchases

The Game of Life

the-game-of-lifeTNThis is the same classic game brought to life in an app. Collect achievements, spin the wheel, get married – all like the original Game of Life. Make it to the end to retire in luxury. Pass around and play with up to 3 friends at once.

iOS – $0.99
Android – $0.99
Windows Phone – $2.99


yahtzeeTNThis classic dice game is fun for all ages. The app version of Yahtzee throws in some additional options, but you can still play the game just the way you did as a child. The perfect game for helping younger kids learn to count.

iOS – $0.99
Windows Phone – $2.99



mastermindTNThe MasterMind app is all the fun of the original without the chance of losing all those tiny colored pegs. Break the color code by using logic on each guess.

iOS – free
Android – free
Windows Phone – free


checkersTNThis classic two-player strategy game is something everyone should learn to play. Even after playing for years you can still learn new intricacies of the game. The app version requires no flat surface to put a board on, no lost pieces, and you can start and stop as needed. King me!

iOS – free
Android – free
Windows Phone – free