Pass The Pen Art Game!


Anyone can play | 15-30 mins


A class favourite! Whenever we have some free time in-between projects or on short days... or really when you just need a few minutes to chill out and do something else while your kids are entertained. This is one game for the books, you'll for sure want to try. I came up with this game a few years ago when I was just starting out teaching, and used this as an ice breaker for the new kids on the first day. It's a great team builder that is sure to get your kids riled up, energised and ready to create!

There are 2 ways to play this game. "Individually" or as a group. You'll know why "individually" is in quotations in a moment, keep reading.

The group version of this game works best in groups of 4 - 6

What You'll Need:

As a Group - Game Rules:

  • Everyone sits around the table or floor in a circle within reaching distance to each other.

  • The teacher gives the black pen to one person. That person writes the team name or group members names neatly in the corner or the paper. Turn the paper over so the names are on the back.

  • Everyone thinks of a shape that they can draw easily and quickly. (Saves a lot of calling out and interruptions if you tell them to just keep their shape to themselves, in their mind)

  • When the teacher says "Go!" The person with the pen has 5 seconds to draw their shape.

  • They pass the pen and paper to the person next to them ONLY when the teacher says "Switch!"

  • But it gets trickier! Because each time the teacher says "Switch" the game will get faster and faster! Meaning less and less time to draw the shape.

  • When the teacher says "Stop!" That ends the game.

  • The group works together to colour in all the gaps and spaces of the paper. Try and fill the entire page.

Individually - Game Rules:

  • The game rules are more or less the same as the group rules, but the difference here is that each person gets their own paper and their own pen. But they still need the group to play! (It's better to use slightly smaller paper with this one, like A3.)

  • Each person draws their shape at the same time and when the teach calls "Switch!", they pass the paper to the person on their left.

  • When their original paper returns back to them it will be filled with shapes from everyone else.

  • Each person can colour in their own page.

This game is a lot of fun if you have a big class.

Questions they'll ask:

Can I overlap shapes? Yes! Please overlap all the shapes. Draw big ones, little ones, long ones, tall ones, huge ones, all kinds! Overlapping the shapes makes a better colouring page at the end.


Can I draw the same shape as my friend? Try and make your shape different.


Can I draw a new shape each time? No, keep your special shape the same each time you get the pen and paper.


Can I use my own pen? The whole group must use the same single pen.


What if I didn't finish drawing my shape when you call "Switch!"? Stop, and pass the pen as soon as you hear "Switch!" even if your shape is incomplete.


Can I draw people, numbers, symbols, or letters? No, just draw a simple shape. I love watching them play this game and get so excited about it. Let me be the first to warn you though, the excitement can get loud!

Have you tried this game with your kids? Leave a comment and let me know!


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