You will need
- A4 paper
- Pens or pencils
- Sticky tack
Before you begin
- Use the A4 paper and pen to make three signs. One should say ‘yes’, one ‘no’, and one ‘maybe’.
- Use the sticky tack to stick the signs around the meeting space. Leave plenty of space for people to move between them.
Play the game
- Everyone should gather in the middle of the space.
- The storyteller should begin telling the 'Example story' below. They should pause briefly after the first statement.
- Everyone should decide whether the storyteller is telling the truth, making something up, or if there’s no way to be sure. They could also look for clues such as the storyteller smiling, hesitating lots, or looking away.
- Everyone should run to the correct sign – ‘yes’ if they think the statement is true, ‘no’ if they think it’s made up, and ‘maybe’ if they’re not sure. Everyone should try to think and move as quickly as they can.
- The storyteller should notice where people have moved. Sometimes, they may want to ask a question or two to prompt people to think again, for example, ‘are you sure you know the answer?’ or ‘what clues can you see and hear?’.
- The storyteller should continue the story – they shouldn’t pause for too long each time, just enough for people to actually move and reach a sign.
This game encouraged everyone to use lots of their senses to work out what was true. Was it easy to work out? Some things, like meeting an octopus walking down the road, are clearly not true – but other things are trickier. How might you know if the storyteller ate a sandwich on the bus? You might know they usually eat a sandwich on their way to the meeting, or that they usually have their tea at home. You might even be able to see sandwich crumbs on them – but unless you saw them eating a sandwich on the bus, you can’t be sure.
This game was also a chance to develop skills. Being able to tell whether something is true or not is really important. People make things up for lots of reasons, can anyone think of some? People may think about someone who wants others to think a certain thing about them, or someone who’s trying to make other people feel the same way they do. When might it be harder to tell if something is true? It can be harder online, as people can’t see or know the person. This game is a good thing for people to keep in mind when they’re looking at websites and deciding whether they’re trustworthy. If people aren’t sure, they should always check with a trusted adult. It’s fun to make up stories and be creative, but it’s usually best to tell the truth.
- Active games
The game area should be free of hazards. Explain the rules of the game clearly and have a clear way to communicate that the game must stop when needed.
- Online safety
Supervise young people when they’re online and give them advice about staying safe.
For more support around online safety or bullying, check out the NSPCC website. If you want to know more about specific social networks and games, the Net Aware website has information and safety tips for apps.
As always, if you’ve got concerns about a young person’s welfare (including their online experiences), follow the Yellow Card reporting processes.