Monday, March 7, 2011

Card games are everywhere

I love how card games provide an opportunity to promote good sportsmanship skills and healthy competition. Someone wins and someone loses. As a parent, it's my job to help my kids navigate those feelings of winning and losing — hopefully inspiring them to continue to work hard to win again the next time they play.

Earlier, I posted a kids' version of the UNO game — using regular UNO cards. Well, this has been a HUGE hit in our house. The boys love playing several rounds of this a day. Hubby (the math wiz of the house) came up with an awesome way to use the cards to teach number placement. Alas, I'll save that for another post... let the anticipation begin! At any rate, my boys (geniuses, really... I'm only slightly biased) found away to apply the concept of the UNO game (matching color and number) to the Candy Land game, which is another favorite.

What you need
  • Candy Land cards (Picture cards optional. They can be used as a "wild" card, if the children can understand that concept).
  • Space on the floor or on a table.
  • 2-4 players.
How to play
  • Deal 5 or 7 cards to each player. Have each player line up cards in front of themselves. Use 5 cards for a shorter game.
  • Place remaining cards in center and flip over the top card into the discard pile (like UNO).
  • The first player must match the number of squares or the color on the top card.
  • The next player does the same.
  • If a player can not match the number, he or she must draw a card from the center pile. If that card matches the discard pile, then he or she may play the card. If not, the play goes to the next person.
  • When a player has one card left, he or she must shout, "CANDY LAND!" This was the boys' idea. Hubby suggested that they say, "UNO;" but Regus #2 was adamant that they say, "CANDY LAND!"I love it!
  • The player that uses up all his or her cards wins! This will last longer than you might expect.
Encourage the other players to congratulate the winner. Here, it's usually High 5's all around the table. The winner should reassure the other players that they will eventually win, too.  It's so rewarding to see my boys cheering for each other. I pray that we can continue this, as they mature.

What card games do your kids like to play?


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