When I started dating Helen, one thing that became apparent was how her family all came together and joy each other company playing a game they called Fish-Animal-Bird. It wasn’t just the games that were fun it was how we’d sometimes all squeeze ourselves around a garden table in a greenhouse until late at night playing the game in the summer.
Once such time we also had a takeaway curry in that greenhouse. None of us had ever tried Bombay potatoes and WOW – did we know about it. I have such fond memories of those times with my future in-laws. They’re no longer with us but I do feel so privileged to have been able to spend those times with them.
What is fish-animal-bird
Fish-animal-bird is a game played with a piece of paper and pen (or pencil). Down the left, you write a series of categories – starting with fish, animal and bird. Then a letter is selected at random (easy these days with “Okay Google”) and each player must come up with something for each category. Sounds so simple, doesn’t it? And it is, the genius of the game is its simplicity.
We play this game now with our girls and they love it. It’s a great challenge sometimes but as you’ll see, from the categories we play with, it’s a game that challenges their knowledge and understanding of the world too.
To be honest you can come up with any categories you like for fish-animal-bird. Here’s a sample of the ones we use regularly:
- boys name
- girls name
- fictional character
- song title
How to play
It’s simple. Select a letter at random from the alphabet and then everyone has to try and put an answer to each category that starts with that letter. You could put a time limit on it, maybe 5 minutes, but we generally don’t bother and it soon becomes clear when people have either completed it or give up.
The scoring is simple. If you have a unique answer for a category (i.e. nobody else picked the same one) you get 3 points if you have the same as somebody else you get 1 point. Obviously, if you didn’t put an answer you don’t get a point for that category. the challenge is deciding if an answer is valid. Back in the greenhouse, this was usually decided by a vote (although tactical voting went on there). Nowadays I simply say, “Okay Google……” and we accept that Google is always right.
Try it, you’ll love it
So, put away that TV remote control. Put down that mobile phone or tablet. Settle into a comfy chair with the family and have an hour or two of great fun and giggles.
Have you ever played this? Let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading.