Family dinners are a fantastic time to build connections with the people you hold most dear. Unfortunately, our kids don't always want to participate in these discussions. Thankfully, dinner table games are a great way to break the ice and even spark candid conversations.
If you're looking for some fun and interesting games to play at the dinner table, we are serving up some spectacular options!
The Letter Game
When kids are learning their letters and working on their reading skills, family dinner table games that harness their excitement for everything alphabetical are an excellent choice. Not only will they help to expand their vocabulary, but they can also keep their focus while you share a family meal. Try this simple letter game:
- Choose a letter. You can start with "A" and work your way through the alphabet, or choose one at random.
- Challenge each family member to find something in the room that begins with that letter.
- The winner of each round is the person who finds an answer first.
Building your vocabulary while enjoying your meal can be a fun dinner table game for families. The sillier the words that kids can come up with, the more fun that will be had. And if you can think of some big and interesting words, you can really help to build your kid's lexicon through this learning game!
- Start by picking a food that was made for dinner, say mashed potatoes.
- Have one person describe the food using an adjective. They can use all five senses to find a word (creamy, buttery, flaky, lumpy, etc.)
- Go around the table until you can't think of any more words to describe the food. Silly descriptors can really get everyone laughing!
Two Truths and a Lie
How well do you know the members of your family? This is a fun game to play with young kids whose list of favorite things is always changing! It is also a good way to get your more closed-mouthed kids to open up. For this family inner table game, everyone will take a turn.
- Have the first player say two truths and one lie about themself in any order they choose. For instance, "My favorite color is green. Today, a lizard got into Ms. Maniscalco's classroom. I traded Macy my chips for her cookie at lunch."
- Next, have everyone guess what they think the lie may be!
- Then, have the player divulge the real answer.
- Continue with the next player until everyone has had a turn.
- Each person gets a point for guessing the right lie and the player gets two points if no one guesses their lie. The player with the most points at the end of the game wins!
If you aren't sure you can get your kids involved in a full-on game, you can try some questions to help get the conversation going. Try questions that test how well your family knows each other, silly This or That questions, or even zany 'What am I?' riddles to make connect a little more around the table.
Dinner Table Trivia Game
I don't know about you, but my family absolutely loves trivia! The key to turning it into a dinner table game is make it speedy! Every person has to give their answer in five seconds flat or they lose their turn and the next person gets to answer. The best part about this game is that your kids will be learning and not even know it.
Top Trivia Topics to Consider:
- Disney Trivia - Kids of all ages can get into Disney-inspired fun.
- Weather Trivia - This everyday topic can be loads of fun when you turn it into a trivia game.
- Holiday - Test how much your family knows about Hanukkah, Thanksgiving, St. Patrick's Day or any other holiday.
- Multi-Subject - Random trivia can work everyone's brains and make dinner time more fun than ever.
- True or False - True or false questions can be deceptively simple and super interesting when you get the whole family involved.
It's great to have at least two players for trivia games, as well as someone to keep score and someone to be the question reader. This dinner table game is perfect for families of four or more! However, you can make it work with even two people by taking turns asking questions and revealing the answers.
Best and Worst Sandwich
Dinner table games for kids should be fun for the whole family! There's no doubt that everyone has parts of the day that were good and others that weren't so great. Because kids usually love to share, this is a fun game to get everyone talking. It's also a great way for the entire family to show empathy to the others while also finding moments to laugh.
- Let each person tell something funny or exciting that happened during the day.
- Have each person talk about something that wasn't good.
- Then, go back to the funny stuff. You'll sandwich the bad between the good and have everyone feeling happy by the end of the meal.
Dinner Table Tongue Twisters
Want to get the giggles going? Tongue twisters are a sure way to get that done! This is also a family dinner table game that can build your kid's vocabulary and pronunciation skills. Start with easy phrases and slowly work your way up to the more challenging clauses!
- State a tongue twister slowly and have your child repeat it back to you.
- Make sure they are pronouncing each word correctly.
- Once they do, see if they can speed things up and say it five times fast!
- Each person gets a turn, but if they get their tongue twisted, they lose the round!
Things Are Different at the Dinner Table Game
This is a fun kids' dinner table game for all ages and gives your kids some problem-solving skills without them even realizing it. For this game, it easier to play if you serve your dinners family style at the table rather than at the counter. Kids love nothing more than putting one over on Mom and Dad, so this is an easy and fun way to let them do just that. There can be a winner for each round of this game.
- Have one person close his eyes.
- All the other players remove something from the table. A napkin, salt shaker, fork, or dinner roll are all great ideas.
- The player opens his eyes and must guess what each person removed.
- The winner is the player who removes the items that can't be guessed.
Guess the Ingredients
If casseroles are a staple at mealtimes in your house, then this is the game for you! The goal of the game is to test your families tastebuds to see if they can guess what is in the dish.
Each person can ask three questions to help them guess the main ingredients as well as the herbs and spices in the dish. Each person takes a turn and the one who guesses the highest number of items wins!
If you like this game, but want to change things up, keep everyone out of the kitchen until it is time for dinner. Then, blindfold everyone and see if they can guess the ingredients without actually seeing the dish!
Would You Rather...
Another great question game to play at the dinner table that can build up your child's problem-solving skills and bring some laughs is 'Would You Rather.' If you have never heard of this silly game, the premise is simple — someone gives two scenarios and everyone must say which they would rather choose. For instance, "Would you rather have a tail like a beaver or feet like a duck?"
These can start out goofy, but can also become a sneaky way to find out your child's likes and preferences. For example, "Would you rather go to San Antonio or Dallas for fall break?" or "Would you rather eat mom's chicken Parmesan for a day or dad's spaghetti for a week?"
For the teens who seem uninterested with answering silly questions, consider asking simple open ended questions instead.
Rhyming Around the Dinner Table Game
Fun learning activities while at the dinner table can make for great family bonding. Another way to help kids to build their vocabulary and have some silly fun with your family is through rhyming words. This can be really useful if kids are just working on this skill at school, but it can be fun for older kids as well.
- Start with something on your dinner plate, like meat.
- Have kids think of a word that rhymes with meat like feet, peet, etc. For older kids, give them a time limit to add more of a challenge.
- Go around the table until they can't think of any more words.
- Pick a new food.
- The best wordsmith could get extra dessert or more TV time after dinner!
Making Dinner Time Family Time
There's no doubt that these dinner table games will get your family laughing and loving meal time. You have to eat, so you might as well make it beneficial for your entire family. By enjoying some games at the table, you can effectively get your kids to stay nearby and have some fun with you.
Don't stop with these games, though. Modify them to your liking and let your kids make up new games. You can even keep the fun going on a family picnic or getting kids excited for dinner with a fun farmer's market visit!