No Sevens Allowed Game

Fun and easy counting game

 Fun Games
 Having Fun
6 – 15 minutes
1 – 8, 9 – 16, 17 – 30, 31+
Children, Youth, Adults

Step by Step Instructions:

  • Have everybody form a circle, this is great for 8 to 15 people.
  • Inform the group to count from 1 until 100, each person must count and say the next number.
  • When moving forward in the counting and you come to the number ‘7’ or a multiple of seven, then the next person must say the word “Happy’ instead of the next number.
  • For Example, 1,2,3,4,5,6, ‘Happy’, 8…13, ‘Happy’, …
  • Every time somebody in the group makes a mistake, the game must start from the beginning again.
  • The game starts over with the person who is on the left-hand side of the members who made the mistake.
  • You can play for about 10 minutes or you can decide on a number or target you would like to reach.

How to Play

A number game, this is something you will either enjoy or dread. Never fear, this game will make you laugh as well as test your math’s skills. Have all members come together to form a circle, you can either stand or sit. Explain to everyone that they must start counting from 1 until 100. Each person must say a number, to the next and so on, moving to the left of each member in the circle.

Some might become a bit suspicious, as this is pretty easy so far. The fun part comes when every time you have a number 7 appearing or if it is a multiple of seven, the person whose turn it is must say the word ‘Happy’ instead of the number.

Here is an example:
The person in the circle begins with 1 and the next person to their left carries on with 2 and the next person 3, 4, 5, 6. The next person, in this case, must know to say the word ‘Happy’ instead of 7. The next person carries on 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, ‘Happy’, and so on.

There comes a time when somebody makes a mistake, what happens then? If a mistake is made, the entire group must now start from the beginning again. The person standing to the left of the one who made the mistake is the one to start the game over again from 1. You can play this game for about 10 minutes or you can try and see how far you can get without making a mistake.

You can also add a number of different variations for this activity, for example:

  • Change it up: Instead of saying a word like ‘Happy’, have the group members clap their hands instead.
  • Change direction: When a person comes to having to say the word ‘Happy’, instead of carrying on to the left, change direction and start counting in the opposite direction.
  • Number change: To add to the challenge, you can use another odd number, for example, the number 3. You could also add two sets of multiples, such as 3 and 5, to be replaced by two words. For instance, ‘Happy’ and ‘Fuzz’
  • Elimination Round: When somebody in the group makes a mistake, they are then eliminated, the last one standing wins.

Facilitating tips

You can have the person who makes the mistake and therefore stops the counting, be the one to start over from the number one again. As the counting goes around the circle, the higher the numbers get, the more concentration is involved. Observe those in the group to see some funny
expressions as everybody is thinking and concentrating very hard. Some of the looks are sure to be quite funny.

To help things move smoothly during the game if somebody appears to think a bit too long on whether they should say the word ‘Happy’ or not, stop the counting. You can either move on from there or have everyone start over, the rules aren’t set in stone and you don’t want to take out the fun if there are too many rules.

Debriefing, Questions, Tips & Reflections

Reflection strategies are always a good way to find out how members felt during the game. Asking a few key questions can help the group process their experience, here are a few for the game ‘Happy’

  • Why do you think that people laughed while playing the game?
  • Did you find the game difficult?
  • Is there anything the group as a whole could do, to play the game more successfully? Do you think it would still be fun to play?


  • You require absolutely no props
  • Helps improve listening skills
  • It is a fast and fun group game
  • Great ice-breaker game