Equipment: pens, paper, toy microphone or mic shaped object (e.g. TV remote)
This is an acting game that requires minimal preparation but can be tons of fun. First everybody thinks of and writes down a silly headline. Give your family some examples of the types of headlines that might be suitable:
- “Today a thousand chocolate bars were found washed up on a beach near Paris”
- “Breaking News: a woman has been spotted wearing a banana on her head in the swimming pool”
- “Scientists have won the Nobel prize for a car that can fly”
- “Several school children have been reported ill in hospital after a joke so funny kept them in stitches for hours”
Don’t share the resulting stories with the group until they are read by the anchor. This is part of the fun!
One person is nominated as the newsreader or anchor, a second is the reporter, and the rest are eye witnesses or protagonists on the scene who will be interviewed by the reporter, using the fake microphone.
Then the headlines are given to one person who acts as the first anchor or newsreader. It is the job of that person to go into the centre, and open the news “WELCOME TO THE TEN O CLOCK NEWS.. All today’s breaking stories direct from our studios in XXX” improvisation required! The newsreader then reads the first headline and hands over to the reporter “over to our corespondent xx who is live on the scene..xx what can you tells us?”
The reporter, who holds the mic, then gives a live update and interviews the eye witnesses with questions such as “how did you feel when you saw the chocolate bars?” more improvisation required! After interviewing the protagonists and the eye witnesses, (2 questions each should be enough) the reporter hands back to the anchor “that’s all we have time for, back to xx in the studio..”
This can be continued until you have exhausted all the headlines. It is also possible to run each headline in turn if players want a go at each different role. This game can work really well as a short improvised play as it has enough structure that families will recognize, but also enough freedom for a healthy dose of chaos to emerge. Improvisations are the name of the game, in improvisation format no-one can be contradicted, so if a player states they have invented an time machine, then try it out!