Today’s families spend less and less time together than in generations past. However, some studies say that spending quality time together is more important than the amount of time.
As a teacher, I’ve literally heard parents say, “I don’t know how to spend time with my kids.” It’s as simple as asking them how their day went, playing catch out in the yard, playing a board game, or playing cards.
If your family is anything like mine, you grew up playing cards – rummy, go fish, spoons, king’s corner, and pinnacle (to name a few). If you didn’t grow up playing cards, no worries! I’m here to help you get started!
1. SLAP JACK: The first card game I remember playing as a kid was Slap Jack. (This great memory might have something to do with the fact that Jack was my grandpa’s name – we always teased him that we were going to slap him! 😉 Typically it was just two people that played – my grandpa and me. We split the deck evenly. We both put one card down at a time. Whenever you saw a jack, you slapped the deck! If your hand was closest to the jack, you got to take the entire pile. If you ran out of cards, you lost.
2. GO FISH: Next I remember learning “Go Fish!”. You can buy a deck of cards at nearly any dollar store, department store, or even right here on Amazon. When we played, each player got five cards to start with. The goal is to get four of a kind. You ask other players for one card on your turn. If they don’t have that card you called for, they tell you to “go fish”. This meant you drew a card out of the middle. The first person to get rid of all their cards won.
3: RUMMY: Rummy was the next game we learned as kids. Grandpa made an easier version that I believe I started playing around age 4. He called it dummy rummy because you could only put down three or four of a kind, no runs. It was an extension of “Go Fish” so it felt natural that this would be the next card game we learned. Here are the basic directions for rummy if you’re interested in learning more.
4. 10 POINT: After we mastered rummy and had a few years of card playing under our belts, we would start to play pitch with the adults. My family always played 10 point, but my husband later introduced me to 30 point – which he had played all his life.
5. TWENTY-ONE: Typically it was just two people that played. We split the deck evenly. We both flip over one card at a time. You can either stay there or move onto another card. You are trying to get to 21 without going over. If you go over, you lose. If you both are under, the person closest to 21 keeps all the cards.
If you’re looking for a great way to spend quality family time with your children, I can’t recommend playing cards enough! You’ll have great laughs, awesome conversation, and you’ll make memories that will last a lifetime!
Heather is the blogger behind HoJo’s Life Adventures where she blogs about parenting, DIY projects, cooking, and life in general. She can also be seen writing posts for her teaching blog where she has taught grades K-6 and served as an elementary principal.