If you have paper and pen, you can play a game of hangman. A person chooses a word or a phrase (depending on the agreed issue) and the rest of the players have to guess it using different letters that could belong to the secret word. When a player says a letter, which is not in the word, the person who chose the word draws a part of the hangman. Playing this game, you improve memory and language area. Guess the secret word and enjoy yourself!

Basic information


The game consists in saying different letters to make up a word/phrase or guessing the word before it is finished using the drawing of the hangman, which would be our time limit.


The aim is trying to guess the word or phrase before the drawing of the hangman is completely finished.

The player can improve the memory and language areas. Also attention area.


The duration depends on the number of players and if they have to guess words or phrases.

  • 1 to 2 players could last 10-15 minutes.
  • 3 or more players could last 20-30 minutes.






Participants’ profile:

  • Dementia level: the game can be played by users with a mild to moderate stage of dementia.
  • Physical requirements: There are no special physical requirements.

Number of participants:

  • The game can be played in pairs or in groups.

Material and requirements

Materials required to play the game:

  • Board
  • Whiteboard marker

Environment considerations:

  • Good lighting levels to avoid glare
  • A quiet room

Support needed

Professionals / relatives can:

  •  Explain the game instructions.
  •  Tell the players the topic of the words they have to guess.
  •  Write down the letters they say that are not in the word/phrase.

Starting point:

Before starting the game the professional or relative should decide what topic s/he would like to play. For example, it could be animals, films, actors/actresses, song titles, clothes, furniture, etc.


A professional or a relative thinks a word or a phrase. S/he draws a line for each letter so the players know how many letters are in the word or phrase.

After that, the player has to suggest a letter. If the word or phrase contains the letter the player says, the professional or a relative has to write it in the correct place. Then the next player takes turn in saying a letter. When the player says a letter that is not in the word or phrase a part of the hangman is drawn starting with his head. The incorrect letters are written on the edge of the paper.

The game continues until all the letters are revealed or the players guess the word or phrase so s/he wins or all parts of the hangman are displayed in that case s/he loses.

Hangman game


Additional information

Variants of the game:

Add or change body parts of the hangman to make the game longer when there are more than 6/7 players.

Alternative games:

Similar games are riddles and describing something so the players have to guess what it is.

For examples of riddles please see:  https://www.riddles.com/best-riddles


It depends on the word difficulty or the length and how many letters the player needs to guess the word or phrase.

Practical activities


  1. Prepare the materials (board or paper sheet, whiteboard maker or pen or pencil) and decide what topic. For instance: animals.
  2. Professional/family gives a brief explanation. Tell them the topic and draws a line for each letter.
  3. Ask for any questions/doubts.
  4. Start the game.
  5. Say letters.
  6. Write down the letters they say that are not in the word/phrase and draw a part of the hangman (figure 1).
  7. Observe if anyone needs help to guess the word and observe the conversations between the players.
  8. Ask them questions about the topic (animals).
  9. Observe how many words they guess and how many letters the player needs to guess the word or phrase. Ask them for their feedback on the game.






Go to http://www.hangman.no/

Click flag to start the game

Select the level (1, 2 or 3) and press “start game”.

Select the topic. For instance: Musical instruments.

You have to press the capital letters on the right to guess the word.

You can see the letter  that are not in the word on the left

The game finishes when the player guess the word.

If you want to play again you will press the button “Next word”

But if you want to change the topic you will press the button “X”.

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