Playing Card Games with Kids (Card Holding Board Tutorial)

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Card games are fun to play with kids. Make this card holding board so that little hands don’t get frustrated.

Card games are fun to play with kids. Make this card holding board so that little hands don't get frustrated.

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Photo Source: Lilit

FishPapa and I have always loved to play games. I’m not sure if it stems from a lack of video and television for more than half our marriage or if we would have played Trivial Pursuit with a vengeance even with the TV in the background. But, suffice it to say, we love games.

And I hate to lose.

But, that’s a post for another day….

And even though, Mr. TV lurks in the background nowadays, we still love to play games, only now we have up to 7 players! Our favorite games to play with the family include Skip Bo, Uno, Blink — all easily portable card games.

Early on we discovered that it was difficult for young children to hold all their cards without sharing their hand with the whole world. Not a big deal with honest parents, but somewhat disconcerting once you’ve got older siblings to contend with.

Enter the Card-Board

Card games are fun to play with kids. Make this card holding board so that little hands don't get frustrated.

FishPapa created a set of these “card-boards” for our toddlers and younger children to use. Similar to the Scrabble tile holders, these card-boards hold any number of cards so that little people can see their cards without laying them all out on the table.

If you’ve got a handy man — or woman — in the family, these are quite easy to make. Well, sort of. I mean, I didn’t make them. But, they look easy enough. Sort of.

Card games are fun to play with kids. Make this card holding board so that little hands don't get frustrated.

Make Your Own Card-Boards

FishPapa’s directions:

Cut several large planks out of 1×6 or 1×8 clear pine. Cut the channels with a table-saw set half-way through the material at about a 10° angle. A thin-kerf blade works best. (That just means that the blade is thin so that it doesn’t make too wide of a cut.) Sand and smooth any rough edges.

See? That wasn’t hard, was it? And you’ll have so much fun playing cards with your kids once you get tooled up with card-boards.

Got a trick to make card games easier for young children to play?

For more brilliant ideas, visit Works for Me Wednesday.

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  1. What a great idea. I think I will show my husband and see if we can make a couple. I can see these being useful for card games but also school activities

  2. Love this idea, could totally use some of these! You should totally sell these!

  3. Another idea would be to cut a phone book binding off to about 1 1/2 inch width. The binding holds the cards very well and is CHEAP! You can make enough for all the neighborhood kids!

  4. I had a thought, and I am a quilter. I have one of those that holds all my quilt rulers. If you didn’t have anyone who could make you one for you, you could get one at your local quilt store that holds quilt rulers, they come in single, double or more rows…the more rows the higher the price, but 10 dollars would be worth it for my little one. Thanks for the idea! Now I’m not just taking things from the kitchen into my sewing room, LOL.

  5. As the kids get a little older… try the game “Five Crowns” (It has elements of rummy so they need to understand of-a-kinds and runs). It’s a BIG hit with DH and I. (DS is only 19m, so he doesn’t get to play yet.) We also like most of “Looney Labs” games, Fluxx specifically.

  6. These are WONDERFUL – putting on hubby’s to-do list right now!!! This will make family game night soooo much less stressful 🙂 Thanks for sharing!!!

  7. Where have you been all my life?! 🙂 We need one of these for each of the littles in my fam. We’ve used the Racko “board” (?) to help hold cards (up to 20?). This is a great idea. I also love the puzzle box idea. I have a few that I could re-purpose. Yay!

    We partner up the oldest kid with the youngest kid (or grandparent lol) and that seems to help while the kids get the hang of the game.

    Sequence is so fun and especially great with a homemade board so many players can reach & grandparents can see the board! Check out this eHow for those of you who haven’t ever played Sequence. It’s kind of like Bingo with partners, a deck of cards, and poker chips! lol Something like that… 🙂

    Fun card link

  8. What a wonderful idea! I am going to have to make some of these for the little guys. In case you are not handy or don’t know anyone who is handy here is an idea for you. My grandpa, who only had one arm, used to use a shoe box flipped over, so cover side down, and use that as his card holder. It works great for little hands or when you are in a pinch to use something quick and on hand.

  9. Brilliant! My daughter is 6 and loves to play cards but can’t hold them all. I just realized the base of my cookbook holder is just like the photo you have – with the slanted groves. I will now have her use that! Thanks for the great idea.

  10. What a great idea!! I cannot tell you how many times I have to re-fan out the cards and place back in their hands – kills me! I will have hibs make these ASAP! THANKS SO MUCH!!

  11. Thanks for the great idea! I will have to get my handy husband to make us some! We have the little hands card holder and it does work pretty well. However, it only holds up to maybe 8 or so cards, so it starts to lose its effectiveness after that. The card-board would be a great solution!!

  12. FishPapa needs his own blog full of super-cool, handy tips… or at least a regular feature on your blog. 🙂 Such a great idea! My handy hubby would be able to do this, I’m sure.

  13. There’s also a manufactured product called the Little Hands Card Holder. Haven’t tried it yet — but it’s low-priced enough that it should be free on Amazon with SwagBucks.

    1. A friend bought us a set of these (I think she found them 1/2 price at Target last summer). One is very tight and hard to put the cards into, and the other works perfectly. It really helped our 4-year-old to hold her cards without showing them to us, and they worked for games with only 4-5 cards but also with a lot, like Old Maid. I wouldn’t spend a lot of money on a set, but they worked!

  14. Thanks. Just sent this link to my own handy hubby! 🙂
    What a great idea!

  15. That’s a neat idea. My kids aren’t old enough for card games yet, but when I used to nanny they always had trouble. I have a slightly different problem of my own. I am sort of ambidextrous, but I can only seem to fan my cards in a lefty way, making it impossible to actually read which card I have. I have to hand-place each card in my hand in order to fan the traditional way. They probably make “lefty” cards for us weirdos, but who would want to play with us? 🙂

  16. FishPapa needs to make these and you should sell them! We would gobble these up in no time!

  17. We just turn a puzzle box upside-down and stick the cards in the cracks for the littles!

  18. I know several in our family that could benefit from one of these! And I’m not just talking little people, either…

  19. I haven’t tried it, but read somewhere to staple two coffee can lids together – just the bottom 1/2 or 1/3, and with the “lips” facing away from each other. The cards can then be held in the top 1/2 in the same way an adult would hold the hand.

  20. LOVE THAT IDEA!!!! It so funny when I play cards with my daughter. She hides behind the ottoman to lay her cards on the floor because she can’t hold them all. So, she is constantly “jumping” back and forth looking at her cards. Especially when playing Uno Attack and she has 15+ cards in her hands! Thanks for the idea!