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3 Fun and Creative Group Writing Games
by Kitty Holman
At a children's party, can you encourage a fun playtime activity that also stimulates creativity and exercises writing skills? You certainly can! Gather everyone around a table, breaking off into smaller groups of five or six if the party is too large. With just some paper and pens, you can keep your child and other party-goers entertained while also teaching them the art of story building and thinking outside of the box.
Pass the Story
This game encourages children to explore the elements of a story, as well as tests their ability to logically complete words and sentences. Give each child a pen and a sheet of paper. Set a timer for 30 seconds and have everyone write down as much as they can of an original story. Once the timer rings, have each child pass the paper to the person directly to their right. Even if someone is in the middle of a sentence or word when the timer rings, have them stop and pass the paper. Set the timer again, and this time, each writer must pick up exactly where the previous writer left off and expand on the story. Continue this process until the stories end up with their original authors. Now each piece of paper has a hilarious story hashed together by several authors and imaginations!
This game engages children in creativity, problem solving, and using context clues. It works best with an odd number of players, so shift the group accordingly. Give each child a stack of paper equaling the number of players in the game and a pen. For example, if five people are playing, each child should have a stack of five papers. Have everyone write down a simple sentence on the top sheet of paper. Then, have everyone pass their entire stack of papers to the person directly to their right. Each child then has a new stack of paper with the top sheet showing the sentence the previous player penned. Everyone reads the sentence to themselves, places that top sheet of paper in the back of the stack, and attempts to draw a picture representing the sentence. This is passed again to the right, where the next player looks at the picture, moves the picture to the back of the stack, and writes down the sentence he or she thinks the picture represented. The stack is then passed again in this pattern until the original author ends up with his or her original stack of paper. Everyone can then see exactly where their phrases ended up, some of which will undoubtedly be comically off-base, just as in a game of telephone!
It's All in the Details
This game teaches children to pay attention to details and learn the importance of accurate descriptions. Pick one child to be the describer. Instruct the describer to write down a description of a person without using any names, whether they are someone the child knows or a television or movie star. Give all of the other children papers and pens. The describer then reads his or her description aloud and all of the listeners draw exactly what the describer is reading. At the end, the listeners can show the describer their drawings to see if the describer finds any that match the person he or she described. They may even find that because they left out certain details, such as a description of the nose or arms, that some of the drawings will be nose-less or armless!