These easy to learn classic card games are perfect for a family game night. Grab some kids and some cards and get ready to have so much fun.
Party like it’s 1999 and have fun the old fashioned way! Simply pull out that standard deck of cards that maybe hasn’t seen the light of day since Ipads were introduced and brush the dust off. These fun card games are a great way to get in some bonding time with the whole family or maybe just to occupy your kids for a bit so you can actually get some things done.
Here are some classic card games that young kids can play. Break out the decks of cards, most games are set for any number of players, and get your game on! Because simple card games are the best way to create new memories with your family, rather than sitting there awkwardly avoiding all the past memories.
The Best Classic Card Games For Kids:
This simple game is perfect for younger kids and all you need is a simple deck of cards.
Players: 2-6 players. Best for young children – older kids will get bored quickly
Objective: The goal of the game is to have the most pairs of cards at the end of the game.
How to play go fish:
- Each player is dealt five-seven cards, then the rest of the deck is placed in the middle, face down. This now becomes the fish pond.
- Players can look at their cards but keep them hidden from the other players. If you already have matches in your hand then put them off to the side.
- Whoever is on the left of the dealer goes first and asks another player if they have a certain card in their hand.
For example, Lucy might ask Steve, “Steve do you have any twos?” but only if Lucy already has at least one two in her hand. In this example if Steve has any twos in his hand he has to give them all to Lucy. If he doesn’t then he will say “Go Fish” and Lucy will draw one card from the top of the deck.
- If you end up getting a match from someone else’s hand then you put those cards to the side and can continue your turn by asking any player for a card, until you don’t get a match and then it will be the next person’s turn
- If you run out of cards in your hand, draw five new ones from the fish pond. The game ends when all the cards are gone from the middle.
The winner is the person with the most matches at the end when the middle cards have run out.
An easy card game that will provide plenty of entertainment for young and older kids. Everyone will love the chance to slap the cards as they play this fun quick game.
Players: 2-4 players
Objective: The objective of the game is simple, get all the cards from the other players
How to play Slap Jack:
1. The entire deck of cards is dealt evenly amongst the players. Keep the cards face down without players looking at them.
2. The player to the left of the dealer starts the game by flipping over their top card and putting it into the middle pile of discard cards. This continues in a relatively fast manner.
3. If a player places a Jack on the pile, the first person to slap the stack gets to keep all the cards. They then will shuffle them into their own cards. If the pile is slapped without a Jack being played one card must be given to the player who played the top card.
4. Once you are out of cards you are eliminated from the game. When one person has all the cards they are declared the winner.
A great game for younger players to learn matching skills. Math skills can be practiced by adding card matches at the end of the game.
Players: 2 or more
Objective: Don’t be left with the old maid card in your hand
How to play:
- Take out 3 queens from your deck of cards. The lone queen left will be the Old Maid.
- The dealer will pass out the entire deck. Each player may look at their cards but keep them hidden from the other players.
- If you have any cards that pair up right away then place them face up in front of you
- Each player then takes a turn taking a card from the player to their right without seeing the cards. If you are able to make a match then put that in your separate pile.
- Game play continues until all of the pairs are matched and whoever is left with the old maid (queen) has lost the game
One of the best card games, its simple and fun.
The object of the game is to be the first person to get rid of all your cards
How to play:
- Each player is dealt 5 cards and the remainder of the deck is placed in the middle of the table, face down as the stock pile. Before starting the dealer then flips over the top card of the stock pile for all the players to see. If it is an 8 it gets shuffled back in and another card is flipped
- Whoever is left of the dealer goes first, from the cards in their hand they must place one that matches the starting cards number or suit.
- If a player is unable to play a card of the same suit or number then they must pick up a card from the stock pile. They will continue to pick up until they get a card they can play (if you are feeling nice you can set a draw limit of three) and it will then be put on top of the pile to finish their turn.
- The game is called crazy eights because the eight card is considered a wild card and can be played on top of any card. Whoever plays the eight gets to pick any suit and the next player has to play a card matching their selection.
- The first person to get rid of all of their cards wins
If you love card games, check out the best board games for kids! All have been tested to keep the kids entertained while still being tolerated by the adults!
In this game having little hands may be to your advantage. This crazy game reminds me of musical chairs because you don’t want to be the last person to grab a spoon because there won’t be one there!
Players: 3 or more
Objective: Don’t be the one left without a spoon
How to play:
- Using a standard 52-card deck deal four cards to everyone face down. The remainder of the deck is placed face down next to the dealer. Spoons are placed in the middle of the players with one less spoon than there are players (So two spoons for three players).
- Everyone will look at their own deck and the dealer will start the game by taking a card from the pile beside them and discarding a card of their choice by passing it to the player on their left. That player will then pick up that card and in a similar fashion decide whether to pass it on or keep it and get rid of a different card. Everytime a card is picked up one must be discarded so you will always have only four cards in your hand. The last player in the round puts their card in a separate discard pile.
- Once started, this game is pretty fast-paced. Once someone gets four of the same card they can sneakily grab a spoon from the middle. As soon as a spoon is grabbed it’s a race for the other players to grab a spoon as well.
- Whoever is left without a spoon loses the round and gets an “S”. This continues until SPOONS is spelled.
- Once a player spells SPOONS they are out of the game and a spoon is removed from the middle. The game continues until there is only one player remaining.
Your kids can spend quality time with each other as they play this easy-to-learn game
Objective: Be the first player to collect the entire deck of cards
How to play:
- Each player is dealt half of the deck. Cards are kept face down in front of each player
- Both people will flip their top card over at the same time. Whoever placed the card with the higher value, Ace being the highest and two the lowest, wins both cards.
- Put the cards won at the bottom of your pile
- If cards of equal value are played at the same time that means war. Each player will then place 3 cards face down in front of them and then flip one card face up. The winner of the war is whoever has the final face up card that is the highest, they win all 10 cards. If it ends in a tie this process is repeated until there is a winner.
- Once one person has all the cards the game is over and they have won
As the name implies this is a fast-paced game.
Objective: Be the first to get rid of all your cards
How to play:
- Each player will be dealt two sets of cards; the first consists of five cards that will make up your hand. The second set is 15 cards that will become each player’s personal deck.
- The remainder will be put into four stacks with the cards face-down in the center. The pile on the far left will have 5 cards, the middle two consisting of one card each, and finally five in the far right pile.
- Each player will flip over the one card pile in the middle. Players then work to eliminate their own cards one at a time by putting a card one number higher or one lower on top of the card in the middle pile. For example, if the card turned up is a 3 each player could place down a 2 or 4 onto that card.
- Work at your own pace eliminating cards one at a time into either deck in the middle. Always make sure you have five cards in your hand by pulling from your deck of 15 after each card is played.
- If both players end up getting stuck, turn over a card from each of the end piles and add them on top of the two center piles.
- If the stacks on the ends run out of cards, then the center piles can be shuffled and redealt to form the same 4 piles again
- Whoever gets rid of their cards the quickest and shouts “Speed” at the end is the winner
Cheat (AKA BS)
The only time it’s acceptable and even encouraged to tell a lie. Fun for both younger and older children.
Players: 3 or more (If playing with 6+ people you will want to add another deck)
Objective: Be the first to get all your cards in the middle
How to play:
- Deal out all the cards until they are gone. Players may look at their cards but don’t show anyone else.
- Once the game starts cards must be played in order with Aces first, then twos and so on. Once Kings are reached it starts over at Aces again.
- When it is your turn you must play 1-4 cards from your hand and announce what you are laying down on the pile even though they will remain face down. For example if you are the very first player and lay down two cards you would say “two Aces”
- However at any time you can lie and place down a card that isn’t correct if you don’t have one for that sequence. For example if you don’t have any threes you could lay down a nine and say “one three”
- If any player believes they are not telling the truth then they call out “Cheat or BS”. That must be done before the next player plays. If cheat is called then the cards laid down must be revealed. If they weren’t cheating then whoever called it must take the entire stack and add it to their hand. If the player is caught in their lie then they take the entire stack.
- The first player to run out of cards is the winner but if someone calls cheat they don’t win unless they have been truthful.
If you love Solitaire and Speed then you’ll love Nertz. Its basically a multiplayer version of solitaire. This can be played in larger groups and is the perfect game for any occasion. The more people you have playing, the more fun there is to be had!
Players: 2 or more
Objective: Win the least points by playing as many cards as possible.
How to play:
- Each player will need their own deck with a unique design on the back. All the decks will get mixed together and they will need to be sorted at the end.
- Each player makes a nertz pile of thirteen cards in one pile. From that pile turn up 5 cards.
- The remaining cards form the stockpile. These cards are played like solitaire. Flip three cards at a time, with only the top card being able to be used.
- Aces are placed in the center of the gameplay area to form a foundation pile. This is a community pile and any player can add cards to any stack of cards in the center. These can be built upon by placing cards of the same suit and in increasing order. When the king is reached the pile is placed to the side. Players place their cards simultaneously, not taking turns.
- While each player is going through their stockpile to build up the cards in the center, don’t forget to keep track of your nertz pile! When any of the 5 cards are played, replace them with another card from the deck.
- If at any point no player can play a card, they must all agree, and they bury the top card of their stockpile by moving it to the bottom of the pile. This will give everyone new cards to play and revitalize the game.
- When someone plays all their Nertz cards they shout “Nertz” and the game is over and the score is tallied.
- Each remaining nertz card counts for 2 points each. The remaining stockpile cards are one point each. The lowest score wins.
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