Teaching Artist Heather Hughes has put together a great list of fun theatre games for us. We’ve included a suggested age range for each game. However, the point of theatre games like this is to get people out of their comfort zone and to become comfortable with being uncomfortable and silly, so you can really use them all with any age!
Age Range: Preschool Through Middle School Age
Where to Play: Anywhere with room to move around
Number of People: Two or more
How to Play:
One person is the museum caretaker getting ready to close up for the night. They walk into their favorite room in the museum and there is their favorite statue, but every time they turn around the statue manages to move without their knowing it! The statue’s job is to move so quietly that they don’t get caught, the caretaker’s job is to try and catch them at it. Take turns with who is the caretaker and who is the statue.
- Pick a theme for the room the statue is in. For example, decide you’re in the animal room so the statue must always freeze in an animal pose, the dance room so they must freeze in a dancer’s pose, etc.
- Add music to make it more challenging for the caretaker because they can’t hear the statue moving!
Age Range: Preschool and Older. Younger children may need help from an adult or older child.
Where to Play: Anywhere you can bring a pencil and paper.
Number of People: Complete on your own, share with as many people as possible
How to Play:
Using the template below, fill in the blanks with answers about you. When finished, you can make it into a piece of visual art or “perform” it for your family or friends on in person or online.
- Add more lines that ask for more biographical information.
- Turn it into an autobiographical poem and fill out answers for other people in your life.
- Turn your autobiographical poem into an even deeper learning opportunity and make it about a famous person, past or present.
- Kids (or adults – hey, why not!?) curl up into a ball on the floor, all tucked in like a rock.
- Another person, like an older sibling or parent, announces an imaginary space that the rock is in., ie: “Magic rock, when you wake up, we’re in a Candy Village!”
- The magic rock wakes up and they go on a tour/adventure through Candy Village, something like this:
- What do you see?
- What does it smell like?
- Can we eat things here? Like the plants?!
- WAIT A MINUTE! There’s a giant candy monster coming, we have to get out of here!! 1, 2, 3, MAGIC ROCKS!”
- The child then goes back to being a rock, and their partner makes up new “When you wake up…” scenario.
One player at a time is put on the spot. Give that player a category challenge and set the timer for 30 seconds (or however long you want— less time will make it more challenging, etc.) For example:
- You have 30 seconds to name 10 things that you would find in a backpack
- You have 30 seconds to name as many kinds of candy as you can think of
- ….types of instruments
- …things you might find in the backyard
- …people you love, etc.
Whatever! It’s a great brain game that can even be played with just one person, though we suggest sticking with two or more people for the most fun.
- If you have a group, make a circle with the person who is naming things standing in the middle.
- For certain categories, have the player act out the words in their list as they say them. This would work great with categories like musical instruments, sports, emotions, etc.
- Make it a silent challenge: have participants write down as many things as they can think of. At the end of the 30 seconds, the player with the longest list wins. And players can get bonus points if they list items that no one else has.