Card Games for Kids

Cards Are Great for Kids

Card games for kids are perfect for rainy day fun or any time your children need quiet, sit-down activities. Children's card games run the gamut from purely fun and silly to educational.

Old Maid

Old Maid is a classic game that may be played with a specialized deck of cards or the traditional one with a Queen removed.

Deal out all the cards and have the players remove all pairs. The first player asks the player to his/her left to choose one card without seeing the face. That player then removes any new pairs and offers a card to the player to his/her left. Play continues until all pairs have been discarded and one player is left holding the solitary Queen, the Old Maid.

Go Fish

Start with 3 to 6 players and deal each player 5 cards. The remaining cards are left face down in the middle.

The goal is to have all four cards of a given rank. The first player looks at his cards and decides which rank he is trying to collect on that turn. He then asks a specific player for that rank. If the asked player has the requested rank, he/she gives the asker those cards and the asker gets another turn. If not, he is told to "go fish." He takes the top card from the stock, and the player to his left gets a turn.

When players have all 4 cards of a rank, they put them down. The one with the most sets (books) wins.

War: Favorite Card Game for Kids

War is an easy game appropriate for any child who understands number value. Simply deal out all the cards. Each player leaves his cards in a face-down stack.

To begin the turn, each player draws his top card and lays it in the middle. The player with the highest value card gets to keep all cards. If there is a tie, the tied players go to "war." They lay two cards down facedown and then draw one more card. That card is left face-up and determines the winner. Whoever has the highest card wins all the played cards.

When a player runs out of cards, he is out of the game. The last player left wins the game.

Memory

Memory, or Concentration, is a great game for teaching matching skills as well as memory.

To begin, mix or shuffle all cards. Lay all cards face down in rows, taking care not to look at the faces. On a player's turn, he turns over two cards. If the cards are of the same rank, he keeps both cards and takes another turn. If they do not match, he turns them back over and it is the next player's turn.

The player with the most matches wins.

Slapjack

Slapjack is great for larger groups of kids! You can have up to 10 players. Divide the cards equally between the players. Everyone stacks his or her cards facedown.

On a turn, one player at a time, going clockwise, takes the top card from his or her own stack and places it in the middle in a new stack. When a Jack is played, put your hand on it. The first player to "slap the Jack" gets to keep the entire stack.

If a player runs out of cards, he may still slap jacks and win back cards, so this can be a long game. The winner is the player with all the cards. Or, you may set a timer. The winner is the one with the most cards when time is up.

Crazy Eights

Crazy Eights is played by two or more players. The goal is to get rid of all your cards.

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Uno

Uno is played with a specialized deck of cards. You'll find instructions for the basic game and variations on the box.

Pigs

Start with up to 13 players, and deal each player 4 cards. The goal is to have all 4 cards of the same rank.

For more fun games for kids, visit our Family and Children Board Games category.

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Card Games for Kids