Our kids love card games, so I designed this set of cards for them featuring the 12 Days of Christmas:
If you print the design on heavy cardstock, it won’t show through. I used some Christmas-themed scrapbook paper that was glossy on one side and white on the other. The cards turned out perfectly! Otherwise, you can back the cards with colored paper if the design shows through.
Use a paper trimmer to cut the cards apart in uniform sizes (most easily accomplished by cutting the sheet in half, then half again, in both directions). Note: You’ll need to make two full sets of cards to play Spoons and Go Fish.
Once your cards are completed, you’re ready to play. Try any (or all) of these variations for hours of fun:
Using two of each design, place the cards face down in four rows of six for a challenging game of concentration. Players take turns turning cards over two at a time. If the cards match, player keeps the pair and goes again. If the cards don’t match, the turn goes to the next player. Player with the most matches at the end of the game wins.
- Go Fish
Shuffle the cards and deal five cards to each player. Put the rest of the deck face down in the center of table. Players look at cards, set aside any matches. Then each player takes a turn asking another player if he has a certain card (to match a card in his own hand).
If the other player has the requested card, he gives it to the one who made the request and that player sets down the matching pair and takes another turn. If the player asked does not have the specified card, he says, “Go Fish,” and the requesting player draws a new card from the deck. Whenever a player runs out of cards, he may draw another from the deck to continue play. Game continues until everybody is out of cards and no more remain in the deck. The player with the most matches wins.
Place a pile of spoons in the center of the table equal to one less than the number of players beginning the game. The person at the head of the table shuffles the deck, then deals four cards to each player, including himself. He then places the stack of remaining cards in front of himself, draws one card, examines it and decides whether to pass it on to the next player, or to exchange it for one of the four cards in his hand and pass the discarded card to the player on his right, then immediately draws a new card and quickly goes through the process again.
Meanwhile, the next player takes whichever card is passed and makes a similar choice, then passes a card to the player on his right. Discarded cards continue to move around the table in this fashion until one player manages to collect four of a kind, at which point he grabs a spoon from the center of the table. As soon as the first spoon is thus claimed, the other players scramble to grab a spoon, as well. The player left without a spoon is out of the game, one of the remaining spoons is removed from the center pile, and players begin a new round.
Each subsequent round will have one fewer spoon and one fewer player. The last player left after the final round wins. For a fun holiday variation of this game, use candy canes instead of spoons.
Using just one copy of each card design, have each player pick a card in turn until all the cards are passed out (four players would draw three cards each, six players would draw two, etc.). If you have more than twelve people playing, you’ll need to use more than one of each design. Once all the cards are distributed, sing the entire song, “On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…” with each player singing only the verse(s) for the card(s) he drew.