Playing games is always a fun way to learn, and memory card games are usually the first game children learn to play. They require concentration and recall abilities that benefit old and young alike.
Even though I’m well past kindergarten, memory games aren’t so easy. I think that just means I need to play them more often!
Although memory games are simple and easy to play, you can use those cards for more than just memory, or you can up the difficulty of your concentration game.
Here are five different ways to play with a memory card set.
Playing Memory Card Games
Before we get started, I’ll give you some quick instructions on playing a matching game.
First, you need a memory card set with matching pairs of objects. For a younger child, start with only a few sets until they learn to play. To make it more difficult for an older child, use an even larger group with more matching pars.
You place these all face down in a gird. Next, each play takes a turn flipping over two cards. If they match, they keep them. If they don’t, you turn them back over and play passes to the next player.
As a player, you need to remember not only what you turned over but pay attention to what everyone else turns over so you can make matches.
So beyond the basic matching game, what else can you do with your memory games?
Card Recall Game
Play a recall game by taking five cards and place them down for the other player to memorize once they’ve had time to memorize the cards, pick them up and place down only four. It’s now their turn to remember which card is missing.
You could start with only 2 or 3 cards for younger kids until they build up those memory muscles.
Write it Down
What homeschool parent doesn’t want to get the kids writing? For this game, place a few cards face up for all to see. Next, cover up the cards and have everyone write down what cards they remember.
Tell a Story
The first player draws one card and begins telling a story, including whatever was on their card. Then the next player draws a card and continues the story, including their item.
To increase the difficulty, have each person retell all the lines told before, like a memory train game.
Add Some Dice
Mix it up by adding a die. Before your turn to flip a card, roll one dice to see how many tries you get. Roll a 1, you only get one turn, but roll and six, and you’re in luck.
Make it Messy
Concentration games are typically laid out in uniform rows and columns, making it easier to remember where a particular card is located.
However, to make it a bit more complicated, throw those cards out like spaghetti. When they’re going in every direction, it’s harder to remember where you found the needed match.
As always, technology to the rescue! If you’re ready to play right now, but want something new and fun I have a growing selection of memory games to print and play.
- Safari Animals
- Easter Memory Game
- St. Patrick’s Day Memory Game
- Spring Memory Game
- Van Gogh Art Memory Game
These provide an easy way to incorporate a holiday into your homeschool and have fun learning while playing a game. When printing, you can either choose to print double-sided, which gives you a fun, colorful back to the cards, or only choose the game side and print to save on ink. You can even laminate them for extended use.
Other Fun Memory Card Games
When I’ve purchased a concentration game, I’ve found the best quality to be from eeBoo. These have such study cards and will last for many years. Plus, they have the cutest designs that are fun to look at and use.
However, if you have older kids (or at least a wide range of ages) the eeBoo games might be a bit too childish. Don’t worry, there are memory games for every age and topic.
A great memory game for learning is this one where you match the states to the capitals. What a great idea!
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Can you really combine a memory game and math? You can with the game Boom Goes the Dynamite! I love that this one has some added strategies to win and is fast to play. Quick games make it higher on my list. I love a game of Catan, but that’s a whole afternoon.
- Award-winning math game; If you want a new math card game for the whole family, then BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE your choice; it's a popular math card game offering an exciting way for kids, tweens, teens, families, and friends to build their memory, matching, and math skills while having fun and laughing; Entertain your everyday with a critically-acclaimed and awarded numbers matching math game – 2020 Teacher’s Choice Award
- Fun for those scared of math; Mixing logic, focus, memory & basic math, this popular card game requires some strategy and a little bit of luck to win, so you don’t have to be a math whiz or a genius to play
This Frank Lloyd Wright memory game would not only introduce your children to this famous architect and artist, but it looks difficult!
Another fun artist memory game is this one using Andy Warhol art. Again, this would be a bit difficult as the coloring is the main difference between the cards.
So you find nature more interesting than art? Then perhaps you would enjoy this tree identification memory game. What makes it more difficult is that you’re matching the leaf with the tree, not an identical picture. There is also a game matching the male to female birds and an animal to its track.
Play and Learn with Memory Card Games
Memory card games offer so many opportunities to learn and play. Don’t be restricted to just one way to use your memory cards, as there are infinite ways to use and enjoy your games.
Though they are a simple child’s game, memory cards can have so many uses in your homeschool when you create a life of learning.