Here's an idea that I have only begun to work through - so I can use your help. In my head Switching Places will be a nice activity to work on decision-making, asking for help, readiness, and group consensus. As I see it there can be two (at least) versions - one without playing cards and one with cards. I know I could use this activity after Stationary Greeting from The More The Merrier and before Corner-2-Corner found in my new book Portable Teambuilding Activities - the set up for Switching Places works with these other options.
Without Playing Cards I'm thinking you want a good size group for this one - 20 to 30 (or more). You also want some game spots made from that foamy cupboard liner material you can cut into squares or circles - at least two colors (more colors would even be better). (Now, if you have poly spots in multiple colors they would work too.) Set out the game spots as show in the diagram - one per player - and then ask all the players to stand on a spot. You're ready to play.
The basic idea is that you (the facilitator) will call out different switches the players are asked to make - challenge each player to make as many switches as possible (there might be some switches that all players cannot make). Players are not allowed to move until everyone is ready and they are only allowed to switch (spots) one time after the criteria is called. So, one of the challenges to solve in Switching Places is to create a tool that can be used to determine when all players are ready. This activity will also require most players to talk in order to connect with the person or people they need to switch with - offering an opportunity to connect with a variety of players during the activity. Here are some possible switch ideas. Switch with someone...
With Playing Cards If you deal out one playing card to each person you know have a number of different switching options to choose from. Switch with someone...
From this activity I am envisioning some interesting dynamics. Will the assertive players allow the less assertive players into the game? (Especially when not all can switch.) Who is showing helpful behaviors? Who gives up their switch to someone else? How does it feel when you are not able to switch and do others in the group realize you are not able to switch? (Or, are they only thinking about themselves?) What tool does the group devise to find out if everyone is ready to switch?
The set up for this one also allows for person's with disabilities to participate as long as they can move or be assisted to move - and who assists?
Help me work through this one. Try it out. If you come up with other ideas and switching options share them with us in the comments below. And, thanks in advance.
All the best,
Dr. Chris Cavert is an internationally known author, speaker, and trainer in the area of adventure-based activity programming and its relation to community and pro-social behavior development.
This blog is a space for hands-on programable fun - energetic activities and ideas that can be used as a means to bring people together; activities and ideas we as educators can add to our social development curriculums.