So far I have shared how to play the card games spoons, clock patience, and beggar my neighbour. My next one for you is how to play Go Fish. Recently Leonora, EC, YC, and myself have been playing this before bed. It is an actually a nice quite game (unlike spoons) and has helped calm them down before bed.

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You will need:

  • A pack of cards

You can get packs of cards that are specifically for Go Fish, but a normal pack of 52 cards works just fine.

Object of Go Fish

how to play go fish

To make the most number of “books”. A book is made up of 4 cards of the same rank i.e. the ace; club, diamond, and spade of 7 would make one book.

How to play Go Fish

There are many different variations that people play, so you may already know a slightly different version of Go Fish.

  1. If 2-4 people are playing deal them 7 cards each. If more than 4 people are playing then each person gets 5 cards.
  2. Place the rest of the cards in the middle.
  3. The player to the left of the dealer starts.
  4. The player asks any other player for cards of a certain rank. For example if it was EC’s go he could say “Anita do you have any 4s?” If I have any of those cards I have to hand them all over*. If I don’t have any I would reply “GO FISH”. He then picks up one card from the pile in the middle. You must already have one or more cards of a rank before asking others for it. So EC couldn’t ask me for a 4 if he didn’t have one in his hand.
  5. If a player gets cards from another person they get another go. It they have to go fish then their go is over and play goes onto the next person.
  6. When a player makes a book they can place it on the table.
  7. If a player has no more cards then they may pick up 1 and ask for the cards of that rank. If there are no more cards left in the pile then they are out of the game.
  8. The winner is the player with the most books.

*In some games you only have to hand one card over, not all of them.

how to play go fish

YC and I playing after school – she even has a card holder that makes it easier for her to hold all her cards.

This is probably one of our favourite card games to play. It is really easy. To make it simpler for younger children you could make books with pairs in rather than all 4 cards.

If you enjoyed learning how to play go fish be sure to check out the games don’t wake the shark and my family memory game.

Pin for later:

How to play go fish - a great card game for children and adults

About The Author

Nanny Anita
Norland Nanny

Nanny Anita is our resident Super Nanny. Having trained at the famous Norland College, in Bath, she has over 12 years experience, working all over the world with children from 2 months to 17 years old. Nanny Anita is an expert when it comes to keeping the little ones entertained and writes a column with Leonora called 'Get Crafty' for Little London magazine. Nanny Anita has been on hand to answer our reader questions, and she provides weekly arts, crafts and activities for families to do with their children at home. She really is a modern day Mary Poppins!

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