This is Not a Stick

Goal: Getting students using their imagination.

This is Not a Stick
  • Game

This is Not a Stick

Contributed by Katrina Avino Barracato


Getting students using their imagination.


I play with a stick ( a branch from a tree) until I get all the students’ attention, waiting for them to all look at me. At this point they are wondering why I have a branch in my hand then I say 

  • This is not a stick, it’s a” 

I pretend the stick is a toothbrush, I act it out using big gestures, I can add sound, and directional movement) 

  • When I am all finished acting, I say “scene” nice and loud. This lets my audience know I am done acting.
  • My audience can start guessing what they think the stick was.
  • I choose someone from the audience to come up and try.

Reflection – Students can reflect on how they made choices about using their bodies, voices, and imaginations

Transition into Activity

Play with the stick until all the students are watching.

Transition out of Activity

Three more actors then this will turn back into a stick. 

Classroom Arrangement

  • Audience Arrangement or Circle, or Half Circle
  • Students can be on the rug, or in their seats This can also work in a circle, and just passing the stick to the next student (this is usually for students who are not shy).

Supports/Adaptive Materials/Tools

  • This does not have to be a stick, It can be anything, A pen or a soft ball. The title would just change “This is not a pen it’s a?” 
  • You don’t have to use your voice if you don’t want to 
  • If a student wants to participate, but is shy, she/he can choose a partner to help act it out
  • If a student has an idea, but does not want to act it out, the student can give the idea to a student who does want to act it out 
  • could have students pull ideas written down from a bag
  • Could have multiple objects available to choose from
  • Have the sentence “This is not a ______ it’s a _____”  written down on the board, or a cue card

Role of the Teachers and Paraprofessionals

  • I usually ask the teachers or paraprofessionals if they want to give it a try, and the whole class cheers them on. Most of the teachers want to play along too. So the entire class is really involved and engaged.

Remote Adaptation

Choose an object that students have with them, like a pen or a notebook; students can type their guesses in the chatbox.

Art forms


5-10 mins