15 min - 1 hr
DIY Game, family activities
A good game is fun, challenging, and social. Your challenge is to invent a new game. This could be a board game, card game, an outdoor game with physical activity, or even a game you can play over Zoom. Have fun with it!
Your Game Should:
- – Include a clear “goal” and “rules”
- – Indicate the number of players who can play at a time
- – Be fun to play.
- – Bonus: Be social distance friendly!
Once you’ve made a fun new game, use the link below to submit a photo or video or your game being played or a story about how you created a new game to be included in our Gallery of Awesome and receive a Certificate of Awesome in the mail!
Game Material Ideas:
- – None! Some games don’t require materials at all, just a place to play them! Tag anyone?
- – Recycled: For board or card games, any materials can work—but think about what materials you might already have at home that you can use first.
- – Virtual: You can create a game that is played online using coding tools like Roblox, or Scratch, or create a game that can be played inside existing online games like Minecraft or Animal Crossing.
Feeling Stuck? First Try Modifying A Game That You Already Love:
- – Convert a roll-and-play board game (like Monopoly™ or Chutes and Ladders™) into a new game with different rules, a new spinner, or different cards.
- – Make a version of a card game like “Go-Fish” or “Slap Jack” about something different, like viruses and bacteria, dance moves, or ice cream.
- – Modify a fun group game like “Simon Says” into one you can play on video calls with friends.
Now Challenge Yourself:
- – Try making a game that teaches the players something as they play (like science!)
- – Modify your game so that it can be played with others online or staying at least six feet apart.
- – Practice playing your game with someone else. What would make it more fun? What would make it harder to “win”? Share your game with others and get their feedback to keep improving.
- – Create different versions of the rules for playing your game with a different number of players, harder or easier levels of difficulty, or different places, themes, or characters.
- – Create a name for your new game (and a cool game box or bag if it needs one!) and write down simple, short directions for playing your game that friends or family can easily follow.
More Game Design Inspiration And Guides
- – PBS Kids – Create Your Own Board Game
- – Bay Area Discovery Museum – Invent A New Game Using Old Sports Equipment
- – Listen to game designers and scientists talk about how to make science board games
- – Get inspiration from some of the best-in-class science board games.
Image and video credit: Caroline Gravino
Meet the Writer
About Ariel Zych@arieloquent
Ariel Zych is Science Friday’s director of audience. She is a former teacher and scientist who spends her free time making food, watching arthropods, and being outside.