Life is more fun if you play games.— Roald Dahl, My Uncle Oswald
As parents and teachers, we often wonder how to keep the children constructively engaged. As children grow up, we want to spend constructive time with them. The key, we have found, is to do activities together (make projects or play games) which are fun, engaging and beneficial.
I therefore tried to think of educational games that we could play together and came out with a few. These games are not new, they have probably been there for years, but we just don’t remember them in time. I will be posting some of these fun games one by one.
This week, do try the following game with your child. It can be played by any child with an adult or with their peers/friends.
We tried this game of Spiralling Stories with a few children and they all came back asking for more. You are bound to have fun.
The game of Spiralling Stories is simple – one person starts a story. The next person adds to it and it goes on in a circle (round robin) till the story comes to an end.
To start off, the 1st line of the story can be started by an adult (to set the tone, place, theme, key characters). It is then easier for the child to add to it. Every person can speak 1 or 2 sentences. The key is that story must move forward with each person’s contribution. They cannot just repeat or describe what the previous person has already said.
Person 1: Once upon a time, there was a tiger cub. He lived in a jungle with his mother and father.
Person 2: They lived happily in a jungle. One day the cub saw a human child near the river. (Note: You cannot stop by saying they lived happily. The story needs to move forward)
Person 3: It was a young boy. When the boy saw the cub he leapt towards him.
Person 1: Can now determine whether the cub and boy play, or fight, or run away.
Therefore each person’s sentence adds to the story, and the next person has the freedom to take the story in any direction, and the story goes on.
My experience is that each person brings their own flavour to the story and the stories usually end up being full of twists and turns and the entire experience is a lot of fun for the entire family or class (we have had episodes of children actually falling on the floor with laughter!).
This educational game helps in quick thinking, creativity and also helps in developing and improving language skills of the child, besides being a fun filled activity. It also helps the child get different perspectives on the same thing. He/she would have spoken the sentence(s) keeping a certain story and a certain direction in mind. The next person could however give a completely different twist or direction to the narrative.
I have heard of stories with dinosaurs and aliens (in a single story!), of national emergencies and heroes, of superheroes and even animals with supernatural powers.
Do try it out this week with your children and see how much fun and engaging this simple idea can be.
Additional Tip: If your story has turned out really interesting, you can get your child to write it out as well. It will be a treasure and wonderful remembrance for future! You may also email it to us, and if our editors like it, we can publish the story on this website or on TIPS Times, which is coming soon!