By Elias, 2009.


Think you can tell if somebody is telling the truth? The truth telling game exercises your storytelling skills, as well as often producing some outrageous, hilarious or moving moments.

The boys at Miller Tech recording audio during their Truth Telling game


  • Minimum: 3 
  • Maximum: 12


  • Being able to connect to a story and tell it with conviction is one of the keystones of good theatre.  But how convincing can you be when the story isn’t your own?  Can you tell when someone is being honest with you or making something up? This builds on storytelling techniques.

  How to Play

  • Get the participants into groups of three.  Each group needs to secret themselves away and covertly plan….
  • Now in their groups, one of the three will tell a true personal story to the other two members of their group.  The story needs to be something that has happened to them (as opposed to some guy called Yusef that they know) – keep it personal.
  • For example: when I was five I used to live on a big farm and we had lots of chickens.  There was big red shed out the back where we kept all the animal food and one day I imagined that I was this famous chef like on TV ….(etc. etc.)…. horribly ill and my brother was in the loo for two whole hours but he kept yelling at me from there inbetween the vomiting.
  • The other two members of the group need to be paying attention to the story and taking in all the details – because in a moment they will be telling it to all the other participants as though it’s their own
  • Allow some time for people to get their details right, then bring all of the participants back together.
  • Three chairs are placed ‘on-stage’ and one group of three goes to sit in them. One at a time each member of the group tells the same story as though it is their personal story.
  • The others participants must observe as a cunning audience and look out for signs of falsity.
  • When the three have completed the story telling ask the audience who they think the real ‘owner’ of the story is.
  • Once the audience has deliberated, ask the storytellers to reveal themselves.  You may be quite surprised at the answers.
  • Discuss the results with everyone.  What was the body language like? The eyes? Why did you think one person was false and another honest? What indications were there? etc.
  • Now bring on your next group of three for the next story! I love this game because you’ll always get some really funny and insightful stories emerging.

Other things to try 

You might want to try filming or recording audio to create interesting story content from the Truth Telling exercise!


Storytelling Prompts | Finding Topics to Explore

Morgan Sully, 2010.  Coming up with a worthy topic for a story can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be.  Here’s a few prompts to get you started. Participants Can work for small or large groups.  Not much technology is needed for this activity. Skills/Technique This...