5 storytelling games

Remember when Sunday was a lazy day? No 6.30 alarm clock yelling, “Wake up, Mummy! Come on, Daddy! Toast!” We know it’s warm and cosy under that duvet and you’d give anything to close your eyes for another 10 minutes. We know you really need a lie-in. Well… now you can.

These storytelling activities will entertain your kids and the great news is you can play them with your eyes closed. If only our children were old enough to put on the kettle and bring us breakfast in bed. One day that time will come…

1) Consequences: a creative talking game

You introduce each part of the story and your child finishes the sentence for you.

There was once a boy called… Jonas

And he went to… the shop

He met… Ella

He said… Hello

They said… Let’s buy some biscuits

And then… they all went home to Ella’s house to play

(We tried this out on Jonas. He’s seeing Ella later and was basically describing his perfect day, which involves biscuits and playing with someone else’s toys. It’s going to be a park and no biscuits day. Sometimes life is cruel).

2) Story hunt: send your child off to find props to create a story with

This story is based on props your children bring to you – in bed! The key is to reach a cliffhanger: “He was hanging off the cliff and he saved himself using a….” (that was an actual cliffhanger, but it could be anything) Then your kids go and find a thing to continue the story. (TOP TIP: Pretty much anything can become magic to save any cliffhanger).

If your child loves this idea, they’ll love this pirate treasure hunt.

3) Read to me: encourage your child to tell you a story

A bit of role reversal. You give your small person their favourite book and ask them to read it to you. It really doesn’t matter what they say – looking at pictures is a great way to encourage a love of books, which helps when children are learning to read. And you get to close your eyes.

If your child loves books, check out these book games for little readers.

4) Shadow puppets: this traditional activity always amazes

Turn on a lamp and show your small person how they can wave their hands in front of it to make shadows on the wall. What characters can they create by changing the shape of their hands? You lie down and open one eye to say encouraging things like, “Oh yes, it’s a snake, well done!”

5) Put on a show: encourage your kids to create their own play

Your bedroom is an exclusive theatre and you are a lazy king or queen who must be entertained as you lie-in your bed. For maximum shut-eye time, your small people can dress themselves up for the show first.

If all else fails, decamp downstairs with your duvet, a big pot of coffee and one of these 5 Minute Fun ideas to keep your kids busy until lunch.