Family Christmas Games

December 23, 2015 Published by

Family games are great fun for all ages and are perfect for relationship building. They help children learn about friendly competition, develop social skills such as effective communication and practise strategic thinking.

If you’ve finished off all of your board games or you’re looking for games to play that require little or no materials, here are some ideas to get you laughing and playing together on Christmas day!

Two Truths and a Lie

Get the family chatting and have a laugh! Everyone says three statements about themselves, two true and one false. The rest of the group has to guess which one is a lie.


Snowman Building (or Christmas Tree Decorating)

In pairs, players race against one another to decorate their partner as a snowman or a Christmas tree. You can use toilet paper or green crepe paper, bobble hats, scarves, baubles, etc. – be as creative as you can! Then have a ‘judge’ who decides which snowman/tree is the best.


Pin the Red Nose on Rudolph

The classic party game with a festive twist. Print out this Rudolph template and write everyone’s names on the noses. Then wrap a scarf around the player’s eyes (maybe spin them around a few times) and get them to stick the nose onto Rudolph (use blue tack or sticky tape for younger children).


Santa Limbo

Give players a large jumper with a pillow or cushion stuffed underneath (like a Santa belly). Use tinsel as a limbo pole and have each player limbo under the tinsel (the Santa belly makes this extra challenging!). If they can’t get under without touching the tinsel, they are out. Move the tinsel down a bit lower for the next round and keep lowering it until only one winner is left.


Candy Canes

This is for 4-6 players and is festive take on a game called Spoons that can be great fun for older children. First choose someone to be the dealer. You will need enough candy canes for all but one player – so if you have 4 players, you need 3 candy canes. Place the candy canes in the middle of the table.

The dealer then gives each player 4 cards. They then continue to pass out a card at a time until someone gets Four of a Kind (that is 4 matching cards, such as 4 aces or 4 kings). When a player gets Four of a Kind, they must take a candy cane as stealthily as possible.

As soon as the first person takes the candy cane, the rest of the players race to pick up the remaining candy canes. The person who doesn’t get a candy cane is out and one candy cane needs to be removed for the next round. Keep going until only one player is left.


Mystery Christmas Stocking

Put a few items in a large Christmas stocking (this could be toys or things like cotton wool) and get players to put their hands in to feel the objects (without peeking!). They can then write their guesses down and see who gets the most correct.


Holiday ABC’s

Split everyone up into teams. On a piece of paper, they need to write a holiday related word that starts with each letter of the alphabet. They have 10-15 minutes to write as many as they can and the team with the most items wins!


Penguin Waddle Game

Separate everyone into equal teams and set up a marker point for players to race around (you could use that lovely Christmas jumper you’re wearing). The teams line up and the first player for each team puts an inflated balloon between their knees.

They then waddle (like a penguin!) down to the marker point, around and back to their team. They must then pass the ballon using their knees to the next team member. The first team to have all players complete the course wins!


The Night Before Christmas

Each person is given the name of an item related to Father Christmas – e.g. sleigh, hat, belly, reindeer. The oldest player reads “The Night Before Christmas” to the group while the rest of the players listen out for their word. Each time it is said, they have to stand up, turn around and sit down. When the reader mentions Father Christmas, everyone has to swap seats (including the reader). Whoever ends up in the reader’s seat carries on with the story.


Do you see what I see?

Two players sit back to back, one with a piece of paper, a pencil and something to lean on  while drawing (e.g. a book). The second player is given a holiday object (hidden from the first player) such as a stocking or ornament and they must describe this to the other player without saying the name of the object.

The first player draws what is being described and after five minutes of describing and drawing, the players turn around to reveal what the object was and see if this matches the drawing. Players can then swap or a new pair can have a go – keep score to make the game competitive!


 Photo credits:
Human snowmen by Fusion Childcare Services
Stocking by operation_janet
Candy Canes 3 by Nicholas LabyrinthX
Gentoo Penguins by David Stanley
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This post was written by Anna Taylor

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