Card Game Directions

GAME: Cribbage  You can even play without a cribbage board.  Just keep track on paper  using tally marks… first one to 121 wins.

GAME:  Basic War—Each player turns one card face up. The player with the greatest number wins the skirmish, placing his own and all captured cards into his prisoner pile. Whenever there is a tie for greatest card, all the players battle: each player lays three cards face down, then a new card face up. The greatest of these new cards will capture everything on the table. Because all players join in, someone who had a low card in the initial skirmish may ultimately win the battle. If there is no greatest card this time, repeat the 3-down-1-up battle pattern until someone breaks the tie. The player who wins the battle captures all the cards played in that turn. End Game: When the players have fought their way through the entire deck, count the prisoners. Whoever has captured the most cards wins the game. Or shuffle the prisoner piles and play on until someone collects such a huge pile of cards that the others concede.

War Variations

  • Addition War—Players turn up two cards for each skirmish. The highest sum wins.
  • Advanced Addition War—Turn up three (or four) cards for each skirmish and add them together.
  • Subtraction War—Players turn up two cards and subtract the smaller number from the larger. This time, the greatest difference wins the skirmish.
  • Product War—Turn up two cards and multiply.
  • Advanced Product War—Turn up three (or four) cards and multiply.
  • Fraction War—Players turn up two cards and make a fraction, using the smaller card as the numerator. Greatest fraction wins the skirmish.
  • Improper Fraction War—Turn up two cards and make a fraction, using the larger card as the numerator. Greatest fraction wins.
  • Wild War—Players turn up three cards and may do whatever math manipulation they wish with the numbers. The greatest answer wins the skirmish.

GAME: Tens Concentration  

How to Play – Play proceeds to the left around the table. On your turn, you may flip two cards face up. If one of the cards is a 10, you may take it at once and flip another card face up. If the pair of face-up cards add together to make 10, you get to take the pair. If they do not make 10, leave them for a few seconds so all players can see what they are, then turn them face down and let the next player take a turn.  Optional rule: If a player finds a pair, he gets a free turn and may try for another pair right away.

Endgame When all the cards are claimed, whichever player has collected the most cards is the winner.


  1. Use a double deck for larger groups.
  2. If playing with a wide range of ages, you may want to let the younger players take a free turn whenever they find pairs, but limit the older players to one turn at a time.
  3. You might let the free turn option expire when there are only ten cards left on the table. The will keep one lucky player from running the table out, getting all the last pairs for himself.
  4. Concentration may be played as a solitaire game.

DICE GAMES: Here are a few number bond games to enjoy with your children:

  • Throw two dice and tell how many more you would need to make 10.
  • (On the rare throws of 11 or 12, the answer is a negative number.)
  • Throw 3 dice and tell how many more it takes to make 20.
  • One player names any number 0-100, and the other tells how many more it takes to make 100.
  • You could also play the last game with math cards [take out the jokers and face cards, leaving just ace (1) through 10], turning up one for the tens place and one for the ones, to make a two digit number.

GAME: Up and Down the River

Set Up: Materials: 1 deck of card per 3 players 

How to Play: This is a simple game but really helps students to learn the numbers that come immediately before and after a number. Remove all face cards before handing out the cards. Designate one student to be in charge of flipping over the cards. The first student to call out the number immediately after the one flipped over gets the card. Once they have gone through the entire deck they are to play the game in reverse. The first student to call out the number immediately before the one flipped over gets the card this round.

End Game: The player who has the most cards at the end of each round wins. This can be modified by changing the amounts. For example, you may have students call out two more, three more etc.

GAME: Make 10

How to Play: Players are to deal 10 cards in a row. They are then to take turns finding combinations of cards that equal ten (7+1+2 etc.). Once a player has removed a combination the cards are replaced before the next players turn.

End Game: The game ends when there are no more cards or no more combinations to be made. The player with the most cards is declared the winner.