Tech-Free Games for the Holidays


Put down the phones and turn off the screens! It's time to indulge in laughter and discover juicy tidbits about your loved ones this holiday season. Here are four kid-friendly parlor games for you and your family to pass time with.

Loaded questions — For those who want to know each other a little too well

Are your guests a group friends and family who aren’t afraid to bare it all, then loaded questions is a game for y’all. The game is easy and doesn’t require anything from you. Well, it requires one thing. You need to be honest.

• The participants write a question each that they throw into a hat.

• Every player takes turn to pick a question from the hat and read it out loud.

• Once the question is read aloud you’ll all have to write down an answer on a piece of paper that is collected and shuffled with all the other answers.

• The entertainment begins when the answers are read out loud and you all must guess who the answers belong to.

Guess the name — For the ones who think they know their city

How well do you know your city? Well, if you’re all pretty sure you know it like the back of your hand then this guessing game could be a fun challenge for your group of friends.

• Separate the groups in teams.

• Each team shows the other team/s a picture of a building, a statue, a sign or anything else from your city.

• The team that calls out the right name receives a point. The team with most points wins the round.

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Telephone Pictionary — For the artsy and funny group of friends

Remember the little experiment we all did in school where something was whispered into our ears that we forwarded? By the time the sentence reached the last person of the group, it was completely different. Well, Telephone Pictionary is like that.

• The players each get a notepad on which they all write a sentence on the first page.

• They then pass the notepad to the right and everyone reads the sentence silently.

• The players illustrate the scenario on the second page and pass the notepad along to the right.

• This time, instead of reading the sentence they’ll have to write a sentence they think describes the illustration.

• The players repeat the above-mentioned steps until the notepads have made the round.

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Fictionary — For the know-it-alls 

If you’re a group of competitive friends and family, then a game of fictionary is right up your alley. The word game requires the players to guess the definition of an obscure word. Here are the simple rules:

• A player is chosen to be the picker for the turn. The picker chooses a hard word from the dictionary that he/she reads and spells out to the players. If a word has more than one definition, the picker chooses which one to use and informs the players the definition he/she didn’t use.

• Each player, including the picker, writes a definition of the word on a piece of paper.

• The picker collects and shuffles the submissions before reading each one aloud.

• The players, the picker not included, vote for the definition they believe is right. The players are usually not allowed to vote for their own definition. The group can allow it, but the players who do vote for their definition don’t earn any points. Voting for your own definition is a strategic move that encourages players to vote for your definition.

• Points are given to those who voted for the correct definition and to those whose definition was picked. If no one selects the correct definition, the picker earns three points

• The dictionary makes its way to the next picker to start a new turn. You’ve played a round once all players have gotten to be the picker.

Bonus: You can switch this game up a bit if you’re all well-read English majors who love poetry. Swap the dictionary for a poetry book and let the players guess the fourth line in a poem after the picker reads the first three.