Paper telephone is a surprisingly amusing writing game, perfect for kids who start to read and write.. It’s a take on the classic communication game, where a teacher would line up all pupils and made them whisper a sentence to each other, following the chain of pupils.
Not surprisingly, ‘final sentence’ had little to do with the starting sentence. You got the point, but it wasn’t so much fun..
Fortunately, the paper version is much better, as it alternates between writing and drawing. You can start playing with kids who just start to write. It encourages them to use language is a fun way.
[Read more: best pen and paper games for kids]
Paper telephone – Writing game instructions
Paper telephone best played with a medium sized group of at least 4 people, as everyone only gets 1 turn. I mean, it doesn’t make sense to circulate the paper back to player 1, which made up the starting sentence..
Step 1: first sentence
Player 1 writes down a sentence. It would be good to start with a simple (funny) observation (save the philosophical questions for later ; )
For example, ‘The dog ate the shoe of the baker’ or ‘the football crushed the tulips’.
Step 2: player 2 draws the sentence
The second player reads the sentence and draws a representation of it. Then, he/she folds over the piece of paper such that the sentence can no longer be read. So, the original sentence is now hidden from the next player. This means that player 3 can only see the drawing of player 2, nothing else. The drawing is all information that he/she gets.
Step 3: Player 3 writes down what he sees
Then, a third player only sees the picture and writes down what he observes, in a single sentence. He/she folds over the piece of paper such that the next player does not see the picture, only the new sentence.
Step 4: Continue to draw/write and fold
The following players continue to draw or write, based on the information that they are given. At the end of the sheet, read the final sentence and see how it has altered from the original!
Continue drawing and writing until all players had a turn and compare the first and last sentence!! Good for small groups or classrooms!
You can play this game on any piece of paper, as long as it is tall enough to fit your drawings and writings. If you want to get off a good start, simply download the template that I made.
Instant download the printable version of this super fun writing game!
For the particular version of the game, you’ll find instructions here:
4-6 players can play with half a sheet.
6-12 players: cut the paper in half lengthwise and tape it together to make one long sheet (alternating blue en yellow boxes).
Free template of the Paper Telephone Game
Click on a button below to get your free copy of the pen-and-paper game ‘Paper telephone’. You can select the paper size, A4 or Letter. No strings attached!
I hope you enjoy this game! It’s a part of a larger collection of printable pen and paper games that you can find here. I urge you to have a look at these and use it as a reference when you go on holidays!
Love playing games? Check out this super useful list of pen and paper games! They will be a life saver when you travel. Also, you may want to peek at the printable travel games that I designed. Cheerful retro-inspired designs, fun to play!
Are you at home and are you looking for play ideas? Have a look at these, ranging from lego to monsters, there may be something you like!