You can pull out an old game from the basement — but why not play one of these creative, curated games for even more fun?
It’s Chol Hamoed. You finally have everyone in one place. Sure, you can pull out an old game from the basement — but why not play one of these creative, curated games for even more fun? Try one (or all) of these:
- Ask each family member to contribute a reward and make a request. E.g., a reward can be, “I’ll make your bed for a week.” A request would be the opposite, “You have to do my Erev Shabbos job this week.”
- Make sure you have enough rewards and requests to fill 24 squares. You can do 12 rewards and 12 requests, or any preferred ratio. List all of them on a paper, numbered 1–24. (Steps 1 and 2 should be done before Pesach, so the writing is done before Chol Hamoed.)
- Using regular bingo boards, with B,I,N,G,O cards and number cards, start calling out letters and numbers. Each number coordinates with a number on your list. So if B-17 is called, whoever has a 17 under the B column will receive the reward or request for that number.
- If someone lands on their own number, they can swap with someone else, or there can be a general reward offered to anyone who lands on their own reward.
- Only award the rewards and requests to someone who actually gets a row. Otherwise prizes will fly off the shelves!
Some sample rewards and requests:
- I’ll take you to the mall! Love, Rivky
- I’ll bake cookies for you! Love, Yitzi
- Free bedtime pass! Love, Mommy
- Babysit the baby for an hour
- Go out for lunch! Love, Daddy
- Drinks and fries date! Love, Mommy
- Do Dovi’s Erev Shabbos job
- Shine Avi’s shoes for Shabbos
- Sleepover with a friend! Love, Mommy
- Prepare everyone’s snacks twice
- I’ll organize your closet! Love, Shira
- You pick supper for a week! Love, Mommy
- Make supper for Mommy one night
- Free bedtime pass! Love, Mommy
- Organize the pantry
- Make Shira’s bed for a week
- Breakfast in bed! Love, Rivky
- Take out the garbage every evening
- Color code Rivky’s art supplies
- I’ll make a BBQ for your friends! Love, Avi
- I’ll take you on a bowling outing! Love, Daddy
- Write thank-you notes for Yitzy’s bar mitzvah gifts
- Read little Shimi three books
- $20 gift card to Amazon! Love, Daddy
- Treat the family to pizza
- I’ll make supper, Love Daddy
- Hang out a load of laundry
By the time the kids are all loaded in the car to go on your Chol Hamoed trip, you’re probably hoping against hope they’ll just listen quietly to whatever is in the CD player. But if you’re hopes get dashed, don’t fear. These games will make the miles fly by. (Thank you, Michal Frischman and family, for the first two ideas!)
- Name That Tune: Play a song for ten seconds, either the beginning or middle of the song, and have your kids guess what song it is.
- Rhyme-Opposite-Rhyme: Start with a word, let’s say, Cake. Then, a sibling needs to add a rhyme to that: Snake. The next person needs to say the opposite for that: Giraffe. Then rhyme: Laugh. Opposite: Cry. And so on.
- Car by Color: (This one’s for the little ones, aged 3–5). Print (or draw) a sheet before you get into the car of rows of cars by color (Do common car colors: gray, black, white, red, blue). Give the child a crayon, and have them cross off each of the colored cars as they see them. This will keep them busy for a while!
This can work well for a long drive, but will be equally fun indoors. Take turns picking any letter from the alphabet. Then go through the lists below (or create your own), and come up with answers, each of which starts with the designated letter. You have two minutes to finish each full list!
- Family member who’s always humming
- A dish Bubby always serves to guests
- Cleaning supply Mommy uses
- Shabbos table can’t be without
- Out-of-town frum community
- Title of a children’s book
- Frum clothing brand
- Pesach nosh
- Restaurant in town
- Song that came out in the last two years
- Chol Hamoed trip
- Must-have of the season
- Pesach song all kids know
- Name of a third cousin
- Shabbos party staple
- Boys will be boys example
- Wedding song on repeat
- Frum vacation spot
- Item in the pantry
- Name of a chesed organization
(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 736)
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