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How to Play the Memorize the Tray Game

Give your memory a workout by playing food memory games.
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Birthday parties, baby showers and bridal showers usually involve games of some sort. This game tests both memory and powers of observation. This simple but entertaining game for people of all ages can be modified for any type of party.

Prepare the tray before the party by placing at least 25 small objects on it. The objects might include such things as a watch, safety pin, toothbrush, hair clip, bottle of nail polish, CD, pen, postage stamp, rubber band, Band-Aid, tweezers, toy soldier and newspaper ad. Cover the tray with a pillowcase.

Give each guest a notepad and a pencil. Explain that they should sit close together in a circle and will have exactly 60 seconds to look at the tray and try to remember what they see on the tray.

Set the timer for 60 seconds and remove the pillowcase covering the tray. Allow the guests to focus on the items. Cover the tray and remove it at the end of 60 seconds.

Give the guests 2 minutes to jot down all the items they remember seeing on the tray.

Ask who listed 25 items. If no one has, ask who listed 24 and so on until you find who listed the most items. Ask the guest to read off her list as you check the tray to see if the items listed are among those on the tray. Award a prize to the guest who listed the most correct items.

Things You'll Need:

  • Large tray
  • Variety of small items
  • Notepads
  • Pencils
  • Timer


Set the tray on a low table such as a coffee table so that everyone can see it. Customize the variety of items on the tray for special parties. For example, for a baby shower, include a baby bottle, diaper, pacifier, a bottle of aspirin, a bootie, bib and rattle. For a wedding shower, you might include a ring, a string of pearls, a garter, cookbook, doll's bridal veil and a boutonniere.


  • Make sure all items on the tray are visible and that no item is covered by another item.
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