Busy > 7 Group Games that Senior Citizens Can Play with Family
19th Mar 2021

7 Group Games that Senior Citizens Can Play with Family

There are many group games for elderly that they can play with family. When we are children, playing is second nature to us. Yet as we grow, we start losing touch with our playful side. Initially, this happens as we get busy with education, work, and other life’s responsibilities, and then the body starts losing its agility. By the time old age strikes, we have moved far away from games and sports.

However, playing is something that should be continued for as long as we are able to. Whether it is single-player games or group games, each game has loads of benefits to offer for both the mind and the body. Old age comes with its own challenges, and games for elderly can help beat many of them, such as

●    Increasing social engagement, which is directly linked to the upliftment of mood and better mental health.
●    Better physical health, as playing group games may require light to heavy movement which is essential for normal functioning of the body.
●    Improved cognitive ability, as different games may require the players to remember things and use their mind for thinking.

Now that we have established that playing games have a lot of advantages for the elderly, the next question is which game to play. Well, here’s a list of super enjoyable group games for elders to play with their grandkids and family members:

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1.    Bingo

Bingo is one of the most popular indoor group games played and loved by people of all ages. It was originally called “Beano”, until one day a New York toy salesman Edwin S. Lowe overheard someone accidentally yell “Bingo” instead of “Beano” and decided to name it that.

Items Required to Play:

i.    A set of 25 numbers and a bowl to draw numbers from.

ii.    A piece of paper with a table of 5X5 which has random numbers printed on it along with a marker for every player.

These are common items that can be used to play many group games, making it a preferred choice of games at any time.

Instructions to Play:

i.    Every player is provided with a piece of paper with a random table of numbers till 25.

ii.    The host then draws numbers one by one from the bowl and announces it.

iii.    The players keep marking the announced numbers until one of them gets 5 numbers marked consecutively. It could be a row, a column or a diagonal. After this, the player declares their win by yelling “Bingo”.

Bingo ranks as one of the most suitable games for the elderly, as it involves minimal physical activity, fosters group play, allows elders to socialize with peers, and adds a touch of excitement to their daily lives.

2.    Scrabble

An architect named Alfred Mosher Butts invented Scrabble, originally called “Lexico.” A small group of 2 to 4 people play this game, making it one of the most liked family group games. However, the host may organise. Scrabble tournaments by inviting a larger number of people to play in sub-groups and win the grand prize by defeating challengers in the tournament.

Items Required to Play:

i.    Multiple sets of 15X15 boards and 100 plastic alphabets are required to play Scrabble, which is among the best group party games for children and elders alike.

Instructions to Play:

i.  The game includes 100 tiles, with 98 marked by a letter and a point value from 1 to 10. The point value for each lettered tile corresponds to the letter’s frequency in standard English. Common letters like vowels are worth one point, while rarer letters like Q and Z are worth 10 points. Additionally, the game features two blank tiles without markings or point values, which players can use as substitutes for any letter on the board.

ii.  If a player lays seven tiles on the board in one turn, a “Bingo,” and scores all the formed words, they receive a 50-point bonus. The team with the higher score wins the game.

Scrabble is one of the most useful games and activities for elders. Scrabble, a highly beneficial game for elders, enhances the ability to locate items around the house through regular play. Engaging the entire brain, it helps improve memory and cognitive skills.

3.    Bocce

This Italian classic, which dates back to the Roman Empire is easy to learn and play. It is among the most loved outdoor group games loved by elders.

Items Required to Play:

i.  The standard set includes 8 bocce balls, typically four green and four red, and a pallino, also known as a “jack.” This smaller ball serves as the target for the bocce balls during gameplay.

ii.    A measuring tape and a grass surface to play known as Bocce Court which is 13 feet wide by 91 feet long in dimensions.

Instructions to Play:

i.   Two teams compete against one another, tossing 8 bocce balls as close to the pallino as possible.

ii.   This is among the most enjoyable group games to play for seniors. Outdoors games are recommended by many world researchers for the elderly. And Bocce, being a group game, can make a fun day for the elderly in an open space. It involves a good amount of exercise and improves the immune system.

4.    Passing the Parcel

In the classic British party game Passing the Parcel, players pass a parcel from one person to another. A group of people sitting together plays this game, and it can comfortably be played indoors. It is among the most loved family group games and does not require much physical activity. Some benefits of the game would be improving the mood and enhancing the cognitive skills of the elderly.

Items Required to Play:

i.    A music box and a passing object such as a pillow or a parcel.

ii.   Various gifts wrapped in gift paper which are to be given to the winners.

Instructions to Play:

i.  The host plays the music while participants pass the parcel around in circles until the host stops the music randomly. The person holding the parcel at that instant gets eliminated. Passing the parcel becomes one of the most fun-filled games for large groups when played fairly. To ensure fair gameplay, the host should not see the parcel’s passing.

ii.  As the music plays and stops, players continue to get eliminated. The last remaining person without the parcel when the music stops wins the prize.

iii.  Players can enjoy this game multiple times throughout the day, allowing everyone a chance to win.

5.    Year of Invention

People who have always been fascinated by the history of the country or the inventions that have occurred since the beginning of mankind find this particularly interesting. It is one of the best group games for memory.. It benefits the memory and helps seniors identify objects.

Items Required to Play:

i.   Ten everyday objects and details about their origin/history.

Instructions to Play:

i.   Place all the objects on a table and number them from one to ten. Hand out sheets of paper that are numbered the same way and have each player write down the year they think each object was invented. (Make sure that nobody has access to an Internet-enabled device.)

ii.   Score each player’s sheet: Six points for correctly guessing the exact year, three points for being within 50 years, or one point for being within 100 years.

iii.   The player with the highest points in total wins the game.

6.    Photo Puzzle Race

It is among the most fun group games which a big group of people can play together. It helps in enhancing the senses of the elderly by making them identify various colours, thus stimulating the brain, which improves the memory and helps them find various objects in day to day life.

Items Required to Play:

i.   Large coloured photos of either common objects or the players themselves.

Instructions to Play:

i.  Obtain large colored photos, preferably of the people who will be playing the game. Cut each of the photos into smaller puzzle pieces.

ii.   Split players up into different teams and have them compete to see which team can solve their puzzle the fastest.

7.    Name That Tune

It is a musical game loved by people of all ages. The game helps in regulating blood pressure by providing a relaxed environment while having a friendly competition. It has a positive effect on the mental health of the elderly. This could be one of the most exciting group party games for the elderly it acts as a mood enhancer too.

Items Required to Play:

i.   A music box and favourite songs that create feelings of nostalgia for the seniors.

Instructions to Play:

i.   Start playing one of the songs, pausing the music after a few seconds. See if anyone can guess what it is. Keep playing and pausing the song until someone makes the correct guess and do the same for the remaining songs. Give prizes to each of the winners.

Concluding Thoughts on Games for Elderly

Games for elderly create happiness, and impact the body in a positive way. Apart from the seven games mentioned here, there are plenty of fun group games for elders to indulge in on a regular basis. Elders often find the best game partners in their grandchildren and other family members, and as young people, it is our responsibility to support them in the same.

However, elders who do not live with their family may not find  good company to enjoy the games. This is where Emoha Elder Care comes into the picture. Emoha is a community of elders and caregivers who interact with them and care for them. They participate in group activity games, take care of their health and day-to-day needs, help them stay safe, and assist with managing their overall life. For us, it is always #EldersFirst

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