Telephone Pictionary

Name of Group Game: Telephone Pictionary
*Special thanks to Chris Chu for providing the group game idea
*Special thanks to Antonia Kam for helping with this game




Small Group (more than 6 people)


Large Group (20 + people)


Age: Middle School – Adults

Time: 20 - 30 minutes

Summary: Similar to the game of telephone, except with using pictures and phrases! See how distorted the flip books become as each person goes through it.

Goal: To interpret the pictures and phrases as accurately as possible.

- Making Paper Booklets: Take 8 x 11'' pieces of paper (portrait). Fold and cut the pieces of paper in half horizontally, so that they will be 8 x 5.5". Then, give each person 5 pieces of paper. Have them fold the paper in half vertically (4 x 5.5") and make paper booklets. Staple the pieces of paper at its book spine.
- A pen for each participant
- Chairs and a table which people can sit around

How to Play the Telephone Pictionary game:
1. Ask everyone to sit in a chair around the table. Once everyone has been given a paper booklet and pen, you can explain the game. Each person is to write a short familiar phrase or sentence on the cover of the booklet, for example: "I believe I can fly" or "Rock paper scissors". Give everyone one minute to write a phrase down. Next, tell everyone to pass their booklet to the person to their right.

2. Each person will read the phrase on the cover of their new booklet, flip the cover page, and draw a picture of their interpretation on the right side of the booklet. Give everyone one minute to draw a picture of the phrase. Then tell everyone to pass their booklet to the person to their right, with their picture open and visible.

3. Next, the person will look only at the picture that the person to their left has drawn. In their new booklet, tell them to flip the page, and draw a short phrase that interprets the picture (on the right side of the booklet). Give everyone one minute to write a phrase down.

4. Continue this pattern of drawing pictures and writing phrases until each person receives their own booklet back. Then, have each person go through their own booklets and showcase each page in front of the group.

Variation for Large Groups:
1. Split everyone up into teams of 7-10 players and ask each team to sit around a table. Give every team a booklet and a pen.

2. Announce an initial phrase for the first person to write on the cover. Then, have the first person flip the cover and draw a picture of their interpretation on the right side booklet (complete steps 2-3).

3. Once the booklet reaches the original person, you'll be the judge on whose booklet is "the most accurate" OR "the most creative" (your choice) to the original phrase.

Initial Phrases:
- "I believe I can fly"
- "Show me the money"
- "Gone go fishing"
- "Life is like a box of chocolates"
- "I'll be watching you."
- "Three blind mice"
- "E.T. phone home"
- "I'm the king of the world"

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