Can you copy what you can’t see? drawing game

After the pig weighing and egg cracking fun we had last week, today’s brain boost question is a drawing game about team work and listening skills, as we’re asking: can you copy what you can’t see?

Can you copy what you can’t see? drawing game

This activity invites children to draw something and then pass that picture onto someone else using only words. Can someone copy exactly what you’ve draw without ever seeing it? It’s a great exercise in giving clear instructions and listening well. Here’s how to play the drawing game:

Step One: Sit back-to-back or opposite sides of a table – somewhere could can’t see what the other person is drawing.

Step Two: Each person needs some paper on a clipboard and a pencil. One person, the Drawer, draws a picture. You can draw anything you like but you might want to keep your design simple to start off with.

Step Three: The Drawer has to describe their picture to the other person and the other person has to try and draw it – exactly the same! You can’t show each other the pictures, so the Drawer needs to try and give clear, precise instructions.

:: This is a great way to practise sequencing a set of instructions. What should you tell the others to draw first?

:: It builds in lots of different language: next to, on top off, below, on the right, in the centre

:: You need to think mathematically: smaller than, bigger than, about the same size as…., draw a triangle

:: It’s fun! We had lots of giggles when the final drawings were revealed.

To make it easier for younger children just stick to drawing shapes, or tell the other person what the overall picture is meant to be (it will be a cat, a clown, a pig…)

It’s fun for a whole class or as a party game too. You could work in pairs or have one person describe their picture to the rest of the group/class. Or set up a chain of children and have them try to pass an identical picture the whole way round the group.

An excellent resource of preschool activities, toghether with 10 printables. Includes math, literacy, art, science and play ideas for thre to fice year olds. Click through to download your copy.



  1. Jennifer says

    In my 6th grade cooking class my teacher did something similar as a demonstration of why recipes need clear instructions. She got everything needed for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and had a volunteer tell her how to make it. When he said get some bread, she tried ripping the bag open because he didn’t tell her how to open it and when he told her to spread the peanut butter she used the wrong side of the knife. It was lots of fun for us and we got the point she was trying to make.
    This sounds like a great game, I’ll have to give it a try!

  2. Cindy says

    THis is a great thinking game, which will help the student to understand that drawing is about constructive building words needed for drawing. I have made cards with only shapes and lines, passed them out, and had cards of the same size ready for a pair of students to describe and draw in turns.

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