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Published June 18th, 2014
Rediscovering Recreational Games
Linda Lan Phung, a Miramonte High School senior who volunteers throughout the East Bay, is an officer with Club Be the Star You Are!(r), and strives for 17-second miracles, inspired by author Jason Wright.

I must confess, I gradually drifted away from board games and the like as I grew older. I forgot about playing Monopoly and War, the card game, opting for games on the computer such as Solitaire and chess. I played less of these board games not because I did not like them, but because I had nobody to play with. However, once I got the courage to ask my cousins to choose Twister over Call of Duty, I rediscovered the joy of recreational games again.
These recreational games, which can vary from puzzles to board games, are great ways to improve strategic thinking. Sophomore Daniel Ginsburg says, "I like playing chess because it helps me plan ahead and teaches that I can lose while still having fun." Through playing chess, Ginsburg has also developed other important skills like good sportsmanship and patience.
Not only do board games foster mental growth, but they also bring people together with family and friends. There is no limit to how many people can play the board game - although there may usually be two to four players, games like Cranium can involve a whole circle of people! Freshman Daria Torba says, "These games are amazing to pass the time and can also act as icebreakers."
However, board games have their disadvantages, too. They take a long time, and it is hard to find people who have the same desire to play. Whenever Torba plays the classic games, like Monopoly, with younger children, an argument always ensues. Despite the disputes, it is important to learn how to resolve them peacefully. By communicating and compromising, all of the players can learn to cooperate in the future.
Because of the difficulty of finding other players, people may go for online games. High school senior Kaiser Pister says, "I don't think we can compare board games and computer games - the latter are meant to be more fast-paced and competition-oriented, and normally support more than just a family of players." Each type of game has its own advantages and disadvantages, with Pister adding, "I believe they are both equally fun and bring different aspects to the gaming community."
Both games are enjoyable for different types of people, but let us not forget the beauty of recreational games as technology advances with more game applications (apps) and online games. There are amazing board games out there, such as Fictionary, and other party games with cards and puzzles. Don't be afraid to go the road less traveled and play the games less frequented, as I was before. Having diversity in entertainment is refreshing.

Teen Scene is YOUR voice. If you have something to say or have writing skills and want to be part of our Teen Scene team, email our Teen Coach, Cynthia Brian, Cynthia@CynthiaBrian.com.
The opinions expressed in Teen Scene are those of the writer and not necessarily those of the Lamorinda Weekly.

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