Teaching Kids the Gentleman's Game of Cribbage

Since I put this web site up for our club I have had the opportunity to correspond with may peggers across the country and all over the world. One person I got to chat with is Paul Zuiker. Paul is an Elementary school teacher/guidance counselor in Wisconsin who teaches third graders how to play cribbage. We talked a bit about how his program was going and I thought that it would be great to have the basics up on the web and available for other people to see. Paul agreed and until he puts his own web site up I will use this page to try to encourage others to reach out to our young people and teach them this great game. Paul has agreed to take anyone's questions. Please email Paul Zuiker pzuiker@newnorth.net

Teaching the basics

Paul's Cribbage Club meets twice a week in a 25 minute time period between lunch and end of recess. He starts by pairing off kids who have learned how to play with the beginners and then proceeds to teach them the game in little chunks.

First they explain how to peg or to walk around the board. Then the start a simplified game where each kid gets 4 cards, cut for starter and they count the hands based on the following schedule:
1st week: look for 15's only
2nd week: look for 15's & pairs
3rd week: 15's, pairs, runs,
4th week: 15's, pair, runs, flushes
5th week: cribbage solitaire and nobs
6th week: discarding and now deal 6 cards each
7th week: demo the whole game and cut them loose.

Wednesdays they learn a new concept and try it out, Thursday they just play what they learned up to that point.

Being in Wisconsin (a cribbage hot bed) many of the kids can go home and play with parents and reinforce what they learned.

At the club's end of year "just for fun" tournament Paul reported to me that he had 35 kids playing 61 point games to make it go faster. Two kids won 4 games, several won three etc. The top two cut cards to choose 1st and 2nd place. First place got a homemade board from DeLynn Colvert, second got a track board and 3rd got a Uno game. Everyone had lots of fun and he is looking forward to continuing the club next year with both the old players and many new faces.

Thanks Paul, GREAT job this year!

Please feel free to email me with any questions you might have. I do enjoy corresponding with all cribbage enthusiasts.

Rules of Cribbage page
Common Questions about Cribbage
Counting your Cribbage hand
Playing with more than two players page
Rules at ACC Tournaments page
Pegging to Win page
Muggins explanation page
Odd Hands page
Germantown Peggers Home Page