Thanksgiving Activities to do with Grandchildren Part 3

Kids go wild playing this very active game of Spoons. It's a great family game.Spoons.

Not just for slurping soup or dining on delectable desserts.

They are for GAME TIME!

The spoon game is wild.

It’s crazy.

And it’s wild.

Once your family learns how to play it, this will become one of their favorites! Trust me. Voice of experience here.

But, before I explain how our family plays the game of Spoons, let me share with you some other activities that I have written about that you could play with your grandchildren on Thanksgiving Day. (Relationships with grandchildren are made stronger when you play with them instead of just sitting comatose in front of the TV watching football . . .)

Now. On to Spoons.


The object is to collect four cards of one kind (four sixes, four eights, etc.) and to grab a spoon at the end of the round.

Before playing, get one less spoon than the number of players (e.g. if there are 6 players, you’ll need 5 spoons). Place the spoons in the center of the table with the handles pointing out toward the players. Each player is dealt five cards and the dealer keeps the remaining pile of cards. (If you have more than 6 players, you’ll need two decks of cards. We normally use Rook cards but you can use face cards, too).

The dealer picks a card from the deck. He determines whether or not he can use it. Then he discards one card from his hand and places it face down on the table. The dealer says ‘Pass’ and all players pass one card face down on the table to the player sitting to their left. sliding the card face down. (The player to the right of the dealer places his passed cards in a pile between him and the dealer. If the dealer runs out of the original deck of cards, he starts picking up cards from the discard pile.)

When any player has four cards of one kind, he grabs a spoon from the spoon pile. Everybody else grabs for a spoon. The person who does not get a spoon is the loser of that round. The cards are gathered, the person to the dealer’s left becomes the new dealer. The new dealer shuffles the cards, deals each player 5, and begins the passing of the cards.

Our family rarely keeps ‘score.’ We just play until we decide to play a different game. However, if you decide to keep score, the person who is left without a spoon gets an ‘S.’ The next time he doesn’t get a spoon, he gets an ‘P.’ Each time he loses, a letter is added to his ‘score’ until his ‘score’ spells the word ‘spoons.’ When someone’s score spells spoons, that is the end of the game.

A player may be sneaky and take a spoon so nobody notices. It’s always fun to see how long play continues until somebody notices that a spoon has been taken. A player may also fake an attempt to grab a spoon. If a player grabs a spoon when someone has ‘faked it,’ that person who grabbed the spoon an has it in his hand gets a letter added to his name.

For older grandchildren, the speed of passing cards can be rather fast. They are able to keep up with passing cards and determining which cards they want to keep in their hand. If you have a young grandchildren playing, you’ll need to slow the speed down so they will be able to keep up.

A variation of this game is to put the spoons in different places around the room. Then, when you need to grab a spoon, players must quickly go to the spot where a spoon is.

One time at a family reunion, we played this game outside. We were sitting at a picnic table on the patio. The spoons were about 40 feet away on the lawn down a little hill. It was fun to race across the lawn and down the hill trying to beat other players in getting a spoon.

This game can get wild. Gouges and scratches to the table can occur if playing on a wood table. Players can get gouges and scratches . . . Regardless, this is a fun game to play with your grandchildren.

Happy spoon-ing,

Grandma Ideas