Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday Memories—Games to Pass the Time

Photobucket Photobucket
Now are these happy travelers or what?

Darla posted some of the games she plays with her kids to pass the time in the car or in doctors’ offices. She listed Hangman, the ABC game as well as The Alphabet Game and I Spy. She asked what games we play to kill time in the car or in an office. I have no idea what some of our games are actually called, but I’ve described them here for you:

1. The game where you spell words by setting up a rotating order and then each of you add a letter to the person’s letter before. If you are the one who finishes spelling a word or if someone contests you because they don’t think you really have a word in mind and you don’t, you are out. For example:

Cali: “P”
Abe: “E”
Ty: “S”
Ande: “T” Ande is out. It doesn’t matter that she planned on spelling pesticide, “pest” is a word before pesticide and she added the last letter which made it a word, therefore she is out (or if you want to play a longer version, she gets an “H” for that round and when she gets all of the letters in “horse” she is out).

We played this game a lot while weeding the garden. A few of us were spelling challenged and I thought this would help. I’m not sure if it did, but it certainly passed a lot of hours and kept the kids working.

2. The game that has hank-panks, hanky-pankies and hankity-pankities. You think of rhyming words and depending upon how many syllables in the rhyming words they are hank-panks (one syllable), hanky-pankies (two-syllables) or hankity-pankities (three or more syllables). You give clues for your rhyming words. For example:

Hank-Pank Clue: obese feline

Fat Cat

Hanky-Panky Clue: librarian

Reader Leader

Here is a hank-pank from a trip we took to the Little Bighorn Battlefield.

Clue: Erosion.

Give up? Rain Stain. (One of my most brilliant hank-panks ever. My kids still think it is a stupid one, but I’m proud of it because nobody ever guessed it and it lasted for miles and miles. Besides, erosion is a stain the rain leaves.

(Can you imagine the fun Dr. Seuss would have had playing Hank-Panks? I love this game more than our kids [let me rephrase that, more than our kids loved it], perhaps because it made the journey across Death Valley bearable for me as a little girl.)

3. I kept a little suitcase full games and the kids only got to play them in the car. Games like car bingo, view finder, the little toys that you fill with water and then try to get the rings on the dolphin’s nose by pushing a button, travel chess, Brainquest cards, a game where you match the Spanish word with the English word, etc.

4. Reading aloud. This was my favorite because there were no lost pieces and no fighting over who won. When the kids were little I read the books, but when they grew older they read them. Thank you Ande (and a few chapters go to Ty) for getting me through four Harry Potter’s.

5. Finding as many different states on license plates as possible.

6. T.L.’s. If you have heard something positive about someone you say, “I have a T.L. for you.” Then, they must tell you something positive that they have heard about you before you tell them the T.L. you had for them. I’m still not positive what T.L. stands for, but it’s a happy game.

7. That game that is made of ten dots across and ten dots down (making 100 dots total) and you draw a line between the dots and try to make a box where you sign your initial. As you can see, I am poor at technical writing, but I hope I have described it well enough that it at least sounds familiar.

8. The first one to see a deer (or antelope or elk) gets a milkshake at the next town. At least this is the game in theory. I don't remember anyone ever actually getting a milkshake.

9. Ummmm, this isn't a game, but it's definitely a way we passed a lot of time in the car and it is the reason everyone in our family knows the lyrics by heart to Ghost Riders, Little Joe the Wrangler, Tumbling Tumbleweeds, North to Alaska, The Battle of New Orleans, Rawhide, The Alamo, etc. Singing. Yes. The lot of us. Imagine it if you can. Quality has never been a prerequisite. And, . . . no one teaches history like Johnny Horton.

How about you? What games do you use to pass the time with kids? I’d love to read your favorites, or head to Darla’s and put your ideas in her comments.


Cassidy said...

I love Ty's face. So Ty. I love your family. We played beaver. Which basically means that every time we saw a horse we yelled beaver. Why? No clue. I hear we got the game from Carl Byington.

deidra said...

I just taught Chris the greatness of hank panks, etc. a few weeks ago. We had a grand time coming up with them. Too bad it was the last ten miles of our drive!

The dot game was our go-go church game.

Anonymous said...

We play the animal game in the car and at dinner. One person gives the clues and everyone goes around and guesses.

We also play the thankful game- where you go back and forth and have to name something for every letter of the alphabet that you are thankful for and why.

I can't wait to try some of yours!

Darla said...

Thank you so much those are great ideas.. As much time as we kill on the road they are perfect!!!


Julie said...

We play dead fish. Steve yells one..two..three..dead fish. The kids all freeze and hold really still. If you move you lose. My kids are so competitive that sometimes they were quiet for an hour! I know, we are horrible parents. Maybe we'll try some of yours. They sound more interactive.

HeatherM said...

These are great ideas! The boys are so tired of constantly listening to Podcasts of my favorite speakers, they will welcome all of these!

Amy said...

Such great ideas...I'll have to stash this post somewhere I can remember. My dad always did the T.L. thing...something I had forgotten.

Tiffany Fackrell said...

haha, Cass, that game did come from my grandpa!!! The horses were Beavers and the cows were clue how to spell that!!! We played that game ALL the time in the car. I was telling David about it the other day and he asked why they were called that...well I don't know that is just what we called them!!! Another favorite was the alphabet game, you had to find each letter of the alphabet on signs or whatever outside of the car and you had to go in order!!

Emily said...

Holy Moses my Grandma did T.L.'s with me all the time, i'm so excited someone else has heard of it and doesn't know what it means either! "North! to Alaska we goin' North the Rush is on!" Angie and I like to play our own version of six degrees of separation with movie actors. You pick two famous movie stars and try to link them together in 6 movies or less, most people don't like to play because they can't remember anybody's names, Angie is usually the one who dominates this one!

Kim Sue said...

20 questions is always a winner

I see a.... (where each person adds an item and the next person has to repeat them all

Carly made one up on the way home the other day...she would give the first letter of each word in the movie and an actor that was in the movie (for example P.T. Lindsey Lohan and the answer is Parent Trap) the next day we did it with books and characters in the books.