Drawing is a talent that must be continually developed. Encourage teens with drawing skills to refine their abilities, or give beginners structured practice with drawing games for small groups. Games that incorporate drawing promote fine motor skills as well as social development, which is important in the teenage years.
Give the classic children’s word-guessing game Hangman teen appeal by using favorite bands or song titles as the guess phrases. Promote drawing skills by requiring a more detailed sketch than the traditional stick figure, such as a cartoon character or three-dimensional shape. Play sketchpad charades with a large pad, markers and some index cards. On each index card, write an abstract idea for teens to try and draw out, such as “work,” “romance” or “dreaming.” This will be the draw pile. Split players into teams. The team draws a card and then one teammate attempts to draw the word on the card while the other teammates guess what the word is. Points are awarded to teams who guess correctly. The team with the most points wins.
Picture bingo, though often played with younger kids, becomes amusing and exciting for teens when the right prize is at stake. Instruct the players to draw a bingo grid on a piece of construction paper. Prepare a list of about 40 items, and have the kids choose which 25 to populate their bingo cards with. Use simple items for beginners, such as fruit or flowers, and use more advanced drawing items for talented artists, such as furniture pieces, animals or insects. Use paper squares as board markers. Award winners with drawing supplies or special privileges.
Contests and Challenges
Healthy competition motivates teens to do their best work. Find a few volunteers to be judges, and challenge teens to each produce a drawing of a specific scene or item, such as a mountainous landscape or musical instrument. Assign each drawing a letter so that the artists remain anonymous, and have the judges choose the best work. Add a sense of challenge to recreating magazine advertisements by requiring teens to turn the page upside down before copying it. Another simple game idea is to give everyone a list of items or a complex idea to draw -- such as empathy or gratitude -- and set a timer to see who can complete the task the fastest.
This game requires teens to follow directions and interpret clues in order to draw a secret object or animal. Think of an item before game play, such as a cell phone or dog. Then prepare a list of step-by-step directions for players to follow as they begin drawing. Begin the directions with simple shapes and as the drawing steps go on, add directions for drawing details and embellishments. The first person to complete the drawing and reveal the item wins.