Self expression is an incredibly important life skill, so I’m always looking for new ways to get my kids interested in and learning about words. Candygrams is a new addition to the collection of word games for kids, and I found it especially useful for younger children who are still building a vocabulary. The way we chose to play allowed my 7-year-old Anna and 10-year-old Lily to play together (with a little help from me) without Lily having a huge advantage.
Disclosure: I’m a member of Timberdoodle’s blogger review team, and they sent me this product to review. I did not request or receive any other compensation, and all opinions are my own.
Candygrams: A Fun New Word Game for Kids
I find words – spoken and written – incredibly powerful, and I’m always looking for fun ways to teach my own children to love them.
Candygrams is a fun new game. It reminds me of the very popular Bananagrams game but with a twist that makes the playing field a little more even for younger wordsmiths especially.
How to Play Candygrams
There are actually several different ways to play this word game. I’m sharing the version my children prefer.
The game comes with three colors of letters: pink, yellow, and blue. Mix them all up, and then deal 25 tiles to each player. Leave an additional ten tiles in the middle.
Flip over your tiles. Organizing them is optional, but my kids recommend it.
You’ll need a word with one yellow, one blue, and one pink tile to form your first word.
Once your first word is formed, you build additional words. But here is the twist! Roll the two included dice, and then use the colors of those two dice to create your new word.
This small detail creates the needed handicap to level the playing field between younger and older players.
In this game I worried that Anna had placed her words too close together, but she figured it out. They finished the game at the exact same time!
What Are the Ten Letter Tiles for?
Each player needs to build a new word or add to an existing word with each roll of the dice.
If you can’t do this with your existing tiles, you can have two options:
- Skip your turn and hope for better dice colors next time. The problem with this option is that you aren’t any closer to using up your tiles.
- Try your luck swapping in a tile for one from the pile of 10. Lily and Anna like to play where you can keep swapping until you can get a tile you can play. That option wasn’t in the original game rules, but it did help them use up their tiles at the same time.
We had quite a few tiles beyond the ones pictured here in our two player games. So we decided to add a third option where, if you were still stuck, you could swap those ten spare tiles out for an entirely new set of ten tiles from the extras. We didn’t actually use this option, but the kids enjoyed having the possibility.
More Ways to Use This Word Game
My girls loved the tile colors for this game! They come in a nice size and weight, and we found a few more ways to use them:
- Use them as a way to practice spelling words. Your kids might also enjoy this kinesthetic spelling word activity for tactile learners. Want to make this spelling practice more active? Ask children to place one tile on each stair as they spell.
- Run a contest to see who can spell the longest word using Candygrams.
- Compose a name poem, using only these tiles.
Have you ever played Candygrams? What did you think? What are your favorite word games for kids?
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