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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Spot Tag


Spot tag is a funny game for the participants to break the ice, laugh with each other, and work on important skills. They quickly realize how hard running is while trying to hold their leg, ankle, arm, head, etc.

How To Play:
Designate one player as 'it' with the other players scattered throughout the playing area. The person who is it has a ball (that is soft) that he throws to tag the other players. When a player is tagged by the ball, he has to cover the spot where he was tagged with one hand (but is still allowed to be chased) and continues running around. When tagged a second time, the player uses his other hand to cover the spot where he was tagged (but he is still allowed to be chased). When tagged a third time, he/she switches places with the person who is 'it'.

Once the ball hits the ground, it is considered "dead" so if it bounces and hits someone, that does not count. Also, only the person who is it can pick the ball up. No other player can pick it up.

Discussion:
Anger management: talk about how our anger can hinder us and how we can learn to control it
Depression: similar to anger, talk about how depression can hinder us and how we can improve our mood
Laughter: talk about the importance of laughter and enjoying ourselves
Exercise: talk about the importance of exercise and how it can improve our mood and is good for us

Please Share Your Thoughts and Ideas:
What are things you would discuss with this game?
What are some other ways that you like to play tag?

Other Variations on Playing Tag:
Triangle Tag
Animal Tag
Freeze-Tag Toss 
Coping Skills Freeze Tag 

Image Credit:
https://aames3.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/kids-running_300.jpg

Monday, February 16, 2015

Lava River


Objective: participants work together to move entire group across simulated “lava river”

Emphasis
·      Develop cohesion and teamwork
·      Enhance communication skills
·      Stimulate care and concern for others through individual and group responsibility
·      Identify or improve leadership potential
·      Establish support systems

Materials
·      A large open area, a hallway or gymnasium floor
·      One block, brick or rock for each participant (various sizes of cut 2”x4” work very well. Pick up scrap lumber, different shaped wood from a construction site or a piece of paper if you are really low on budget/time)

Instructions
·      Mark a start and finish line on the field
·      Give each participant one block. Explain the only place a team member can step is on the blocks
·      Team members lay down the blocks one at a time in a line toward the finish point, with team members standing on the blocks. It will be necessary to share blocks in order that an extra block is made available
·      Pass the extra block to the front team member who places it on the ground in front of him
·      Repeat this process until all have crossed the “lava river”

Variations
·      Have each member choose a block that represents them. then allow each member to share with the group the attributes that the block possesses that are similar to the individual. Do not give any instructions as to how to complete the task. Remind them the block represents themselves and others and they need to learn and practice using themselves and others as a support system
·      Teach social responsibility by establishing the rule that if one team member steps off the blocks or has some other miscue where the floor is touched, the entire team must return to the beginning to start the exercise again
·      Divide large groups into competing teams and challenge each other to the finish line, or race against set time
·      Give an extra block to the group, or take one block away
·      Blindfold a member of the group to increase care and responsibility for one another
·      Individuals must step on the blocks and not skate across the area on them
·      Do not give specific instructions, but tell group to figure out possibilities
The group must get everyone through an electric tunnel. No one can touch any of the interior or exterior sides of the tunnel or anything that is touching those sides. The group is provided with some “insulated blocks.” Location should be any open area where a tunnel can be improvised out of boxes, etc. or an area where a tunnel area

Image credit: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Ybv1aH9Toug/UemfRyJGP-I/AAAAAAAAALw/SNr2IqC9A2w/s1600/IMG_3220.JPG

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Mine Field



Equipment: blindfolds, variety of obstacles, boundaries

Rules
·      Put numerous obstacles on the ground in a path about 10-15 feet wide and 25 feet long. Natural obstacles are fine, but make sure it is safe.
·      Several people are blindfolded and expected to make it to the end of the dangerous minefield without touching any of the objects or “mines.”
·      Other people are appointed to lead them through safely with only verbal commands.
·      If the blindfolded participant touches a mine they must start over.

Variations
·      Appoint someone to give them false information or distractions.
·      If they step on a mine, have them switch with their partner.
·      Mine Field II: the first partner is blind, deaf, and mute. The second partner can see but is deaf, mute, and cannot use their legs. The partners must go together through the field (Partner one ends up carrying partner two. They will have to create a way to communicate with one another non-verbally).

Discussion
·      Why was it difficult for the person to make it through the mine field?
·      What methods of communication did you use to help your partner?
·      How is the communication in this game like that in your family?
·      Why was it important to rely on your partner? How is this like life? 
·   How can the mines in this activity be like the boundaries in life?

Image Credit: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_QtUvcCue86U/TJdK6W8h2kI/AAAAAAAAC84/mmOB1nEXANg/s320/19.Crossing.Mine.Field.jpg