How to Play Go Fish

Filed under: Toys, Kids' Games, Activities: Toddlers & Preschoolers, Activities: Big Kids, Activities: Tweens

go fish

Give me all your fours! Credit: Getty Images

To play Go FIsh, you need: Two to five players and a standard deck of playing cards.

How to play: One player is selected as the dealer, and he or she deals seven cards to each player. The remaining cards become the "fishing pool" and are spread out in a pile. The player whose turn it is asks another player for his or her cards of a particular rank (for example, fours). If that player has those cards, he or she must give them to the asking player, and the asking player gets another turn. If that player does not have those cards, he or she tells the asking player to "go fish" and the asking player must draw one card from the "fishing pool" and his or her turn is over. If a player runs out of cards, that player must draw one from the "fishing pool." The game continues until all cards have been played.

The rules: Players cannot ask for cards they are not holding. When one player has four of the same cards of a given rank, they form a "book" and are placed face up on the table.

How to win: Whoever has the most "books" at the end of the game wins.

What else you need to know:
There are several variations to Go Fish, such as forming pairs or threes instead of "books" and "going fish" from another player's hand instead of the "fishing pool."

Related: for More Kids' Games

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.