There is an old African proverb, which states, “It takes a village to raise a child.” This saying reaffirms the notion that children have influences all around them on a daily basis.
No matter how involved a parent may be in their child’s life, there will always exist external forces that leave lasting impressions on the child and those experiences will stay well into adulthood and may even be something that they pass on. An influencer who is one of the most important in a child’s life is a Grandparent; these folks have lived in a completely different era with drastically different social, economic, political, and technological surroundings. Social activities and games differ greatly between the two generations but make for a great bonding experience when passing on family traditions.
The Internet is flooded with videos of Grams and Paps playing Wii for the first time, or trying their hands at the whip and nae nae, or even a nana or two playing flip cup and quarters. No matter the age of the individual, the time spent with family can be cherished whether that joy is shared in 1950’s style or digitally. In the upcoming celebration of Thanksgiving, a holiday which we take time to appreciate the things we are thankful for, family usually tops the list; we will be taking a look at the best card games for kids taught to us by our parents and grandparents.
Remember all of our favorite games all have many variations and alternative playing options. The only rule that really matters is that everyone has fun! So feel free to bend, break, or look up alternatives ways to play Go-Fish, War, and Kings in the Corner. We also love to find new ways to expand our fun so please comment below and let us know your family’s adaptations.
Go-Fish age 3-Adult
Go-fish is a game based on groupings; it helps to build memory skills and matching skills.
Equipment: 1 deck of cards
Players: 2 – 10
Objective: To be the player to hold the most amount of matches at the end of the game.
How to play: To begin the dealer who is typically the oldest player deal 5 cards to the participating players face down. After all of the player have their cards the dealer then places the deck in the center of the playing surface and spreads the cards around leaving a pile in disarray this become the “pond” or “ocean”.
Play begins with the youngest player going first. The player will look at their cards in hand with the goal of making and ask any opponent of their choice if they have a card matching one in their hand (the player does not need to specify suite this is an alternate rule that could be added if desired). If the opposing player asked has one or more of the cards requested they must give them to the playing player. When the player has collected all four of a kind they have made a successful match and they separate their matched cards from their playing cards. The matches will be counted at the end of the game.
If the opposing player asked does not have the requested cards they simply say “go fish”, and the playing player can pick up any singular card from the “ocean”. Once a player is told go fish and the collect their fished card their turn is finished.
In the event that a player has matched all of the cards in their hand, thay will pick up playing cards from the ocean up to 5 cards or until the ocean is dry, which ever occurs first. Play continues until all of the cards are matched up. At the end of the game the player count their matches and the one with the most matches is the winner.
War age 4-Adult
War one of the greatest card games for kids to play with adults or each other because it is easy and consistent, there are no twists in the rules. War teaches number values that will be taught in school and can occupy a child for hours.
Equipment: 1 deck of cards
Objective: To be the first player to hold zero card in your hand.
How to play: Players should shuffle and split the deck evenly, by dealing one card at a time to each player. This creates two draw piles, each belonging to one player. Then players flip the top card in a face down draw pile to compete as that player’s soldiers against their opponents. The high card wins the battle and takes that hand. Once the entire deck has been played each player must shuffle their accumulated winning cards and the play continues with the new draw pile until one player is completely out of cards.
In the event that two soldiers of equal strength (the same cards) are up against each other a war commences. each play plays face down 3 cards from their deck placing the 4th card face up. this 4th card determines the winner of the war. The winner collects all 10 cards, then play continues as normal until there is an overall winner.
Kings in the Corner age 6-Adult
This Game builds on cognitive skills that expands beyond just number values, kings in the corner also requires player categorize by color opposition, and multi-tasking.
Equipment: 1 deck of cards
Objective: To be the first player to be out of cards in their hand.
How to play: the deck is shuffled and each player is dealt 7 cards from the top of the deck face down and clockwise. Once all the player have their cards the dealer places the deck face down in the center of the playing surface to be the draw pile, placing the top 4 cards around the deck face up, one on each side of the draw deck (north, south, east, and west) leaving the corners open.
The game begins with the player to the left of the dealer. At the start of each player’s turn, the active player will draw the top card from the deck and then evaluate the card in their hand and see of they match anything open on the board in descending order, the opposite color card from that face up card. A King of any suit may be played, the King card should be laid in one of the open corners face up. If the active player can make no moves they must knock to conclude their turn with a loud audible knock.
In the event of a card in the north, south, east, or west position being playable to the another card in an opposing position or a king’s corner the card, and descending cards may be moved to the available position. This creates an open space on the board that the active player may fill with any card or run of cards in their hand. The player may use all moves available to them before knocking to end their turn.
Once a player has played all their cards that can be played in their hand they are the winner and this ends the game. Alternative endings may be applied with the game continuing for the remaining players or until all of the kings corners are closed. This leads way to a point system where any play the remain cards left in a player’s hand have their values added with face cards hold a value of 10 points and aces 15. The player with lowest score at the end of the sets of play – this is not the traditional way to play though.
Have fun with your kids leading up to the holidays by playing these card games for kids so they can sharpen their skills. By practicing the card games they can really wow the family after the turkey bowl, and turkey dinner before pumpkin pie and nap time. The great thing about these games is that they are traditional fun that have been passed along through generations. Making memories is what it’s all about.