Who doesn’t love a good card game?!
When working in long term care, It can be challenging to find card games that can be played by residents who range in cognitive ability.
‘Flip card’ is a favourite of mine, simply because anyone can play it, and everyone seems to love it.
I was recently successful in convincing one of our residents who is at risk of social isolation, to come out of his room and give this game a chance.
The gentleman saw me a week later and still remembered me as “the card girl”.
He said he loved the game, and that we got him hooked on coming out to activities.
HOW TO PLAY:
In order to play Flip Card, you will need two decks of cards.
One deck is for the person leading the program, and the other deck is for the players.
To start, you will need to do a little bit of quick math.
Count your players and divide the deck evenly between them. Remove the number of leftover cards from the players deck, and then remove the matching cards from the callers deck.
If 7 people want to participate, you would end up using 49 cards (7 each) and the 3 remaining cards would be removed from both decks.
The players then place their cards in front of them, face up.
Once you’ve shuffled your deck well, you will start calling out one card at a time.
The resident with that card will show you they have it, and then flip it over.
*I sometimes prefer to ask the residents to toss the cards into the centre of the table when they are called, as this can help to avoid any confusion between which cards have been called, and which have not. *
The goal is to be the first to have all of your cards flipped.
You can give out a small prize to the winner of each round if you like. I give out 50 cents per round, and then one dollar for the final round.
It’s not much, but it adds a little excitement to the game.
The great part about Flip Card is that it has a similar feeling to Bingo, but only one person will have the matching card to the one that you’ve called. This sort of forces the players to work as a team to help each other figure out who has the card you’ve called, so that you can move on to the next.
This makes it easier to have a range of players, because the higher functioning residents will generally assist the resident beside them.
*For larger groups of players, you could try using an additional deck to divide among the players. In that case, you would just want to remember that 2 people will have to flip their corresponding cards each time you call one out.