Screen Free Games to Keep Kiddos Busy While Dining Out

If you’re dining out with young children, waiting for the food to reach the table can be almost unbearable. Instead of trying to make your kids sit still, distract them by playing a fun game while you wait. They’ll be entertained until the food arrives, and you’ll keep your sanity.

What You Need for “Piggy Bank”:

Pencil or pen

Help your kids learn the value of money with this fun game.

1. Have your child sort the coins into matching piles.
2. Write a value on the piece of paper and have your child match the coin(s) to the value.
3. Very young children can simply match the coins to their correct names (penny, nickel, etc.)
4. Young children are challenged by single coin amounts (5 cents, 25 cents, etc.)
5. Challenge older children by having them use their math skills to add coins together for the correct answer (15 cents, 43 cents, etc.)
6. Take turns with everyone at the table, and let your children try to stump you.

What You Need for “Silly Story”:

Pencil or pen

This is a fun way to pass the time and keep the kids distracted. The group will throw out a variety of suggestions, leaving the secretary to choose his or her favorites and create a final story. The end result is usually a funny one.

1. Choose one person as the secretary. This person will choose what to record in the story.
2. Ask the group to suggest a girl’s name and a boy’s name.
3. Ask the group to suggest something that the boy or girl said.
4. Ask the group to suggest an action that the boy and girl did.
5. Ask the group to suggest something that happened to the boy and girl.
6. The secretary will write out the final story and then read it aloud to the group.

What You Need for “Would You Rather”:


This simple game can help distract the kids in almost any situation and can keep you sane during a long wait.

1. Take turns asking and answering multiple-choice questions about places, actions, or things, such as “Would you rather ride an angry alligator, challenge a sick bear, or sleep with a spiky porcupine?”
2. Follow up by asking the kids to explain their choices.

What You Need for “Money Matters”:

Pencils or crayons

Kids love making these coin rubbings and watching as the imprints magically appear.

1. Place any coin on a tabletop or other hard surface.
2. Cover the coin with paper.
3. Rub the crayon or pencil over the top of the coin to create a magical image of the hidden coin.
4. Make this game more interesting for older kids by using multiple coins to create patterns, shapes, figures, or other “drawings.”

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