Also known as: I’m thinking of a word that rhymes with ________.
This basic rhyming game provides two ways to win: Contestants must either figure out the intended rhyming word, or stump the Rhymer with a question-clue for their own word.
- 1 Rhymer
- 2 or more Stumpers
The Rhymer thinks of a word for the Stumpers to identify and provides a rhyming word as a clue. For example, the Rhymer thinks of the word bat and says:
I’m thinking of a word that rhymes with cat.
The first Stumper then thinks of a rhyming word, but rather than revealing the word, proposes it to the Rhymer in the form of a question-clue.
Is it something you put on your head?
Pressure is now on the Rhymer to figure out the word being proposed by the Stumper. If the Rhymer thinks of a matching word, the Rhymer replies:
No, it is not hat.
The next Stumper then offers up a different question-clue, such as:
Is it high in calories?
No it is not fat.
Play continues until one of two things happens:
- A Stumper proposes a question-clue which clearly identifies the Rhymer’s word
- The Rhymer admits being stumped by the question-clue.
When a Stumper’s question-clue appears to match, it is not necessary for the Rhymer to admit defeat immediately. After all, the Stumper may actually be thinking of a different word. Scraping is racing through the alphabet trying to find a word that matches their clue, but is not your word. For example, your word is buck and a Stumper asks:
Is it to throw?
Rather than giving up and saying:
Yes is it buck.
which they may or may not have been thinking of, you could offer:
No it is not chuck.
When the Stumper says that is not the word I am thinking of, you could counter with:
No it is not huck.
Scraping is way to avoid prematurely giving up your word, or in some cases merely a desperate attempt to delay the inevitable.
Question-clues should not be obvious. Remember, Stumpers are trying to stump the Rhymer. However, to prevent Stumpers from making impossibly difficult question-clues, the Rhymer is not considered stumped unless another Stumper can decode the clue. A Stumper’s strategy is to create a clue which is too difficult for the Rhymer to solve, but not too difficult for a fellow Stumper. While the Rhymer is struggling to figure out your question-clue, other Stumpers are also trying to solve it. Once a Stumper believes he has solved your question-clue, he starts chanting:
Stump! Stump! Stump!
This chanting is designed to be painfully annoying, increasing tension and making it even more difficult for the Rhymer to solve the clue. When playing with young children (or cry-baby adults) you may have to tone down the stumping to the point that it no longer conveys complete and total humiliation. Pity. That really is the point of a game called Stump! Stump! Stump!.
If the Rhymer gives up, the fellow Stumper who claims to have solved the question-clue must now reveal his answer. If correct, the game is over. If not, the question-clue is declared too obscure and play continues with new question-clues.
When selecting a word, consider the number of rhyming options. Thinking of a word that rhymes with bit offers far more options than selecting orange. And no I do not believe door-hinge actually rhymes with orange.
When Stumpers mentally race through the alphabet searching for words, they sometimes forget about consonant blends and clusters. If your word rhymes with bat, when they get to the letter s they will certainly think of sat, but will they remember scat, slat, spat, and splat. Choosing words with consonant blends can have advantages for both Rhymers and Stumpers.
Once a word is solved, or the Rhymer stumped, control passes to the victorious Stumper, who then offers up the next round of “I’m thinking of a word that rhymes with ____.” Play continues until you reach your destination or the group mutinies. Remember, making your opponents cry is not the objective. I’d consider it a side benefit.