We love Christmas party games around here. And each year, I try to include at least one new Christmas game in our family’s line up for holiday entertainment.
It can be really hard to find a game that everyone can play together. And that’s why I love Christmas charades. Young and old. Large or small group. It really doesn’t matter – everyone can act out and have a great time.
So, this year I am excited to try playing this Free Printable Christmas Charades Game that I recently created. It features 36 fun Christmas charade cards with holiday things and phrases.
Christmas charades is the perfect game for a Christmas family game night (think under the Christmas tree while sipping hot cocoa), classroom party game or a fun game to play at your upcoming Christmas party.
How to Play Christmas Charades
The reason that I like Christmas charades as a party game is that most people already know how to play it. And the rules are pretty simple, so it isn’t that hard to pick up quickly.
To play charades, you act out a word or phrase using gestures instead of talking. The first person or the team that guesses correctly gets the point.
Teams or Solo?
Charades can be played in either teams or individually. This is usually determined by the number of players you have. It’s easier (and probably more fun) to divide a larger group into different teams. For a family game night or smaller group, you can play individually.
Decide on How Many Rounds
Before starting play, decide on how many rounds you want to play. You could play through all 36 cards or decide on a specific number of rounds. Choose the number of rounds based on age (younger players might have less of an attention span) or amount of time for this activity.
Also decide on how long each round should be. For older players, you might give less time for guessing. If playing with younger kids, you can lengthen the amount of time so you have enough time to guess. Be sure to have a timer, hour glass or other time keeping device on hand. (affiliate)
Game Set Up
To start, set up the game. Download and print your Free Printable Christmas Charades cards on medium white cardstock. Trim the cards using a paper trimmer or scissors (affiliates). Shuffle the cards and place them upside down in a bowl.
Choose a Player or Team to Start
Select the first player or team. If too many players want to go first, have the person with the closest birthday start. The first player chooses a card.
Time to Act It Out
Set the timer. The first player acts out the card using ONLY gestures. No talking, words or noises are allowed.
The actor might use some common gestures to help others guess. These include holding up their fingers to show the number of syllables, using a “come on” hand gesture when players are getting close or reply to questions. Mouthing the words, spelling, humming and clapping are usually banned.
The other players on his team or individuals try to guess what the word or phrase before time runs out.
For team play, if the team guesses the word or phrase correctly in the time frame, they get a point. If not, the other team(s) has a chance to guess. If they are correct, they get an extra point.
In solo play, the person who guesses the correct answer in the time frame gets a point. If no one guesses it, then no one gets the point.
At the end of the game, the team or person who has the most points wins.
What to Do If You have Younger Children
Although Christmas charades can be played with all age groups, it might be a bit harder for younger kids. Especially if they can’t read the word cards yet.
If you have a larger group, buddy the younger kids up with older ones. Then, they can read the word cards for them. They just won’t be able to participate in the guessing for that round.
Or use picture cards instead. The calling cards of a Christmas Bingo set also make great Christmas charades cards. Or try these Christmas Charade Cards that feature an easier charade idea with a picture and a harder word charade – all on the same card. (affiliates)
Make a Virtual Christmas Game
Christmas charades also make a fun virtual Christmas game. If you’re planning on gathering virtually this year, add the activity to your party’s agenda.
Before meeting up, make each guest a list of charades to act out. Everyone needs to get a different list.
Then at your virtual Christmas party, each person acts out their list of Christmas charades. The rest of the guests can guess.
How to Make Christmas Charades Extra Fun
There are lots of ways to make Christmas Charades extra fun for your Christmas party game.
If you’re dividing into teams, let each team choose a team name. Encourage them to be festive and fun.
You can also play Christmas music in the background as you play to add to the holiday spirit. And make sure you have a prize for the winning team.
Before playing, hand out candy canes so players can enjoy a sweet Christmas treat. You could make these Candy Cane Reindeer for a fun prize for all of the participants.
Christmas Prize Ideas
Although prizes are not a requirement for Christmas charades, it does add to the party fun. When thinking up a prize, keep it Christmas themed. Something useable and fun. Here are few of my favorite Christmas party game prizes. (affiliates)
- Christmas Mug with Hot Cocoa – Check out these favorite Christmas mugs – Merry and Bright or Wonderful Time of the Year.
- Holiday Themed Socks
- Santa Hats
- Christmas Cookies
- Christmas Bath Bombs
- Small Ornament
- Christmas Rubber Duck
- Holiday Scented Candle
Christmas Charades List
I am so excited to share this Christmas Charades Word List. A lot of time was spent brainstorming fun Christmas themed words and phrases to act out.
Here are my favorite Christmas Charades ideas:
- twinkling lights
- North Pole
- hanging tinsel
- baking pies
- Christmas list
- stringing popcorn
- naughty or nice
- Christmas feast
- family Christmas photos
- Santa’s sack
- snowball fight
- Elf on the Shelf
- snow globe
- letter to Santa
- Twelve Days of Christmas
- Santa’s workshop
- elves building toys
- drinking hot chocolate
- snow falling
- decorating the tree
- wrapping presents
- lighting candles
- ornament ball
- sleigh ride
- candy cane
- unwrapping presents
- hanging stockings
- visiting relatives
- baking cookies
- Santa coming down the chimney
- decorating a gingerbread house
- singing Christmas carols
- Christmas cards
Where Do I Download the Christmas Charades Game?
You can download the Free Printable Christmas Charades Game here.. Each card features one of the Christmas charades ideas that is listed above. Simply download, print and trim out the cards.
What If I Don’t have Time to Make My Own Charades?
It’s the holidays, so time might be of the essence. In case you don’t have time (or the materials) to print your own Christmas charades game, you can find Christmas Charades board games here. There is this traditional card game version and a more modern design here. (affiliate)
Love Playing Charades?
If you enjoy playing charades as much as our family, then be sure to check out our other charade games in our shop. We have a more traditional winter version that is perfect for winter parties or a family game night. There are also varieties for birthdays and other holidays.
Looking for more Christmas games? Check out this assortment of traditional Christmas party games. It’s a great way to spend the holidays with family and friends. Or see if you can stump your party guests with this Christmas trivia game. Who knows the most about the holiday season?
Want to save this Free Printable Christmas Charades Game for later? Be sure to pin it below.