We’re going to show you how to play Help Your Neighbor! This is a card game (well, really a card and dice game) that is perfect to teach kids. It can be hard to find games that are equally fun for young kids as well as older kids and teens, and this one really fits the bill. I grew up playing this card game with my family when my grandparents came to visit.
Number of players: 4-8
Recommended ages: This game is great for ages 4 to 99! Seriously!
This game works with 3 players, and my kids will sometimes play it that way. But I think it’s more fun with at least 4. You can have any number of players from 4 to 8. I wouldn’t recommend it with more than 8, just because it would get a little crazy, and the wait for turns would be longer.
Here’s what you’ll need to play Help Your Neighbor:
- 1-2 decks of cards. You’ll need one full suit for each player.
- 2 dice
- Poker chips – 15 for each player
- A bowl to be the “pot” for the poker chips
Setting Up the Game
Remove the kings, aces, and 7’s from the deck. You won’t need the jokers either.
Each player will get 10 cards from the same suit. They should arrange them face up in front of them as shown below.
Each player will also get some poker chips. You can decide how many, and it depends on how long you want the game to last. I would recommend 10 for families with young kids, and 15 if you want your game to last longer. When we have played with 10 chips each, players are starting to be eliminated in round 2.
How to Play
Each player will put a chip in the pot to start the game.
The first player will roll the dice. Then they will flip over the card that matches the number rolled. Jacks are 11, Queens are 12.
Here’s the help your neighbor part! During game play, if a player rolls a number that they do not need (because that card is already flipped over), it will go to the next person who needs it, going clockwise around the table. This ends that player’s turn, and play resumes with the player who accepted the roll. The player who accepted the roll ALSO gets to roll and take their own turn.
As the game progresses, a player will likely roll a number that everyone has already flipped over. If that happens, they keep rolling until they get something that they can use, or someone else can use.
During game play, anyone who rolls a 7 puts a chip in the pot. This ends their turn.
The first person to turn over all of their cards wins! Each player puts a chip in the pot for every card left face up. Then the winner gets ALL the chips in the pot!
Then you can continue to round 2, etc. Once a player is out of poker chips, they are out of the game.
And that’s all there is to it!
Looking for more family game ideas?
Here are 15 Card Games for Families – these games are perfect to play with kids and adults together.