If you’ve ever traveled with wee ones, you know that it can be difficult to keep them from driving each other (or you) up the wall. Spending an evening around a campfire can go from calming to catastrophic in an instant. Try these ideas to keep them occupied while you enjoy your next evening together.
This game requires a little planning ahead of time, but it’s a lot of fun with three to seven-year-olds. Pack some colored dot stickers like the ones you get for garage sales. The perfect circles will be red, but any color will do. Each player gets a sheet of stickers and they spend the evening trying to stick the dots on the other players without them noticing. The person with the fewest number of stickers on them at the end of the night is the winner! But you’d better be sneaky — if you get caught, you have to stick the bite on yourself!
A traditional game that never gets old, telephone is fun for five to twelve-year-olds. As the players sit in a circle or line, one person comes up with a short phrase to pass down the row of players. The first player whispers the phrase into the ear of the second, the second to the third and on down the line it goes. When it gets to the end, see how close your group is to the original phrase!
To add some competitiveness, larger groups can be broken up into two or three, and phrases can be written down by someone sitting out on a piece of paper. Each group will then be passing the same phrase around their circle. The group closest to the original phrase at the end of the round wins.
Especially in larger groups, this game can be a ton of fun. It’s another really great game for elementary school-age kids. One person is selected from the group as a “guesser” and stands in the center of the circle of players. One of the remaining players is selected as the “frog.” This can be done by drawing names or just choosing someone quietly. The frog eliminates the other players in the circle by sticking his or her tongue out while they’re looking at him or her. Once you’re out, you sit down in the circle. The game goes on until the guesser correctly identifies the frog or the frog has eliminated all of the other players. At the end of the game, the frog becomes the next guesser and players choose a new frog.
A great game for a group, tape ball takes a little planning, but a lot of fun. Go somewhere to find some cheap prizes and candy (Target or Wal-Mart’s dollar section, Dollar General or Dollar Tree are great starters) and pick up a roll of tape. Any tape will do, but clear packing tape works really well. Make a ball out of the tape and wrap the candy and prizes in the layers. Game play requires one die. Players stand or sit in a circle. Player one starts by trying to unwrap the tape ball while player two rolls the die. When the player rolls a six (or whatever number you choose), it’s their turn to unwrap while the next player rolls. The game goes on around the circle until all of the prizes are claimed by the unwrappers and the ball is gone.
Keeping younguns busy is a trick of the trade when you’re traveling with munchkins. When you’re wanting to enjoy a peaceful night (or if you’re wanting to play along with them!) these are great ways to start your family time together. Unwrap one of these games and watch the madness unfold as you add a little spunk to your next Good Life adventure.