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COVID-19 survival: Games to play during social distancing


I don’t know about you, but this COVID-19 pandemic has brought some major changes to our family. We’re practicing social distancing, seriously cutting down on our social time with friends and trips out of the house. My husband, three kids, and I are going to be spending a LOT more time at home (meaning…practically all our of time at home).

There have been a few times during this pandemic already that games have helped us out, providing a chance to laugh and play together, to do more than chores or jobs or worrying.

I want to do a roundup post on games of all sorts that could be good to play during this time. If any of you have games you’re playing or want to see posted, let me know! I’d love to hear about them! For now, here’s a giant list of games that might see you through COVID-19…

For so many of these games, a word list would come in super handy! My word generator has TONS! You could create whole new games with some of the word lists on the page. Check it out!

Games to play socially distanced outside

If you’re careful, you should be able to play these games with people outside your home if you stay far apart.

  • Invisible frisbee – A physically active game where players can stand super, super far apart and don’t need to touch the same frisbee!
  • Red light, green light – Good for little kids
  • Animal signs – Very funny and kind of silly game; good for older kids and up; not physically active
  • Monkey see, monkey do – Good for little kids and up
  • Simon says – Good for little kids
  • Photo scavenger hunt – This could spread over a large area. Use a list of photography subjects that don’t involve getting close to other people
  • Charades – Play spaced apart appropriately
  • Signs – Not very physically active; good for older kids and up
  • Where’s Waldo? IRL – Played walking around in a big area
  • Kick the can – This involves tagging players, but if you replace the tagging with “I see ____!” it could work
  • Hit the dirt – A super physically active outdoor game for older kids or teens

Games to play with friends or family virtually

You could of course also play any of these games with people in your home.

Games you could play over video message (or Zoom or Google Meet or FaceTime or any video call)

Games you could play over phone calls

(or over video message)

Games you could play over text message

These are games that would also make great talking games, in person or over the phone.

Games to play with family members at home

Paper games

Talking games

Active games

Other games to play at home

  • Cleaning games – These definitely might come in handy if you have young kids…
  • Tape on the nose – Very silly, good for any age
  • Photo scavenger hunt – Very adaptable!
  • Don’t Eat Pete – Fun, easy little kid game
  • Claps – No supplies needed, for older kids to teens, not really much competition involved
  • The cup game – Also for older kids to teens, also not much competition involved
  • Rock-paper-scissors
  • Speed Scrabble – For teens to adults
  • Animal signs – Tweens to adults; no supplies needed, and it’s fun!
  • Clothespins – A game that could fill a whole day
  • I spy – Great for young kids, also very adaptable
  • Marshmallow toss – You need marshmallows and a muffin tin
  • Monkey see, monkey do – No supplies required, but best with a slightly larger group
  • Mystery gift pass – Could make a fun reward activity for kids of any age
  • One hundred – Fast-paced, easy, and fun
  • Simon says – Great little kid game
  • Spoons – Face cards and spoons required
  • The candy bar game – Some supplies required, but it can be a lot of fun! Great for kids, too
  • The human knot – Need a slightly larger group
  • Skittles – If you have a lot of Skittles…
  • Murder (winks variation) – Tweens to adults, slightly larger group
  • Murder (hand-squeezing variation) – Tweens to adults, slightly larger group
  • Walk on the ceiling – Any age kid, and kind of a one-player game
  • Penny in the flour – Can make a trivia game more exciting!
  • Eat a donut from a string – A funny challenge game
  • Water in the face – A guessing game
  • Alliteration adventure – A type of versatile activity
  • Who am I? – A guessing game; can be good for kids who can read
  • Memory – Any age, various supplies required
  • Play doh blow darts – Great for kids!

And finally, games NOT to play right now

Other Related Games and Posts

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