the storyteller hot air balloon

If your family loves Mad Libs, then they will love this game. This creative game has given my own family much enjoyment and can make the time go by fast. At the simplest level the storytelling game can be played purely for entertainment and laughs, but can also be played competitively.

At its heart, this game appeals to both the young and old. Imaginations are welcome, as is a sense of humor. Stories can range from a far far away desert to fantasies set in the middle ages when knights of valor rescued princesses from dragons (not sure how many times historically that actually happened, but its fun to imagine!).

No matter what, you and your family will have fun and the stories will always be a unique and happy diversion. If you are having a hard time coming up with a good story context, one thing we like to do is come up with "what if" stories centered around our favorite movies or books. For example, what would have really happened to Indiana Jones during the refrigerator scene in the movie Kingdom of the Crystal Skull if physics were real?

Fun Fact

How To Play The Storyteller


To be the last player able to contribute to the story (if playing competitively)

Game Play (just for fun)

  1. As a group, first come up with a parent narrative. For example, a subject, theme, place and time for the story to take place in.
  2. Select someone to go first. It's usually best to have an adult to start the game off so the younger children can better understand how to play.
  3. Next, let the storytelling begin! Each person takes a turn telling the story "one" sentence at a time.

Game Play (competitively as a group)

  1. In this game variation the story is told one word at a time. The initial game setup is the same as it is when playing for fun. Everyone should first come to terms on what the story will be about.
  2. Then, going clockwise, everyone takes turns coming up with "one" word to tell the story.
  3. Each person is allowed 3 seconds to come up with the next word in the story and it must relate to the overall story being told.
    Variation: The time here can be shortened or lengthened depending on current age levels in the car. Use our Game Countdown Timer to help keep time
  4. If you miss a word, you're out. Keep going in a circle until one person is left. This person will be known as the grand storyteller and given a peanut!

Game Play Variations

Instead of a story, try a thought provoking poem. For children it can be fun to come up with a fun sounding rhyme. This way might be easier to say line by line. For example, the first person might say, "I saw a cat..." The next person might say, "that was chasing a rat..." and so on.

For the even younger children you could try just using rhyming words only. Going in a circle, the first person picks a word, and each person has to come up with a word that rhymes with the first word chosen; for instance, if the chosen word is "bear," the next person might say "pear," and so on.

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