10 Ways to Play with Grandkids
Spending time with the grandkids is often full of laughter, love, and a little too much sugar. But even a spry and creative grandparent could use a few ideas now and again. From card games to photo book exploration, here are some games that span ages and offer some mellow afternoon fun. Scroll down to let the bonding begin!
- Card Games.Your little card shark will love cleaning up at Go Fish, but she might also enjoy learning some other old-school games. Grandparents can choose from their favorites: Gin, Crazy Eights, War, Slap Jack, and Rummy are all winners!
- Crack open a book. A pile of picture books (or one riveting chapter book) and a comfy couch are the makings of a perfect day. Make a trip out of it by going to the library, or let the kids show off their personal collection and pick out books they think their grandparents will enjoy, too.
- Time Capsule. To memorialize special or long visits with grandparents, collect mementos of your time together to make a time capsule—think photographs, ticket stubs, drawings, and puzzle pieces. Here’s a how-to for assembling the capsule itself.
- (Grand)mother, May I? While running around outside might be a bit too exhausting for a few grandparents, there are several classic yard games that appoint at least one participant who needs to stand relatively still. Some of our favorites include Mother May I; Red Light, Green Light; Simon Says; and all kinds of hand clap games such as Pat-a-Cake and Miss Susie.
- Puzzles. Take over the dining room table, and clock in a few hours of peaceful silence (or happy chatter) by putting together a jigsaw puzzle. You can dust off something you have on-hand, or grandpa and the kids can go out and choose something together.
- Have a Tea Party. Raid Grandma’s closet, break out the China (or the paper plates), and cut sandwiches into triangles and have a fancy tea! Grandparents will love being served and will likely appreciate the opportunity to reinforce gracious table manners.
- Go for a Walk. Nature walks are fun during any season. Have the kids put on some comfortable shoes and a hat, and they can hold grandma’s hand while they explore a new trail or give her a “tour” of the neighborhood.
- Hunt for treasure. One part riddle, one part hide and seek, an indoor treasure or scavenger hunt will delight grandkids (and grandparents) of all ages.
- Play “Guess Who?” Bust out the photo albums and play a round of “guess who?” where the grandchildren try to guess who family members are from older pictures. This is a great way to connect kids with people they may never have met, and remind them we were all young once!
- Plan an imaginary trip. Research a place you would like to go, even if it’s an imaginary place like Hogwarts or a faraway country like Antarctica. Use a globe or even google maps to find the country; find books about the place or look it up together; create a packing list; plan an itinerary; and write some postcards. This can be an ongoing scenario!