Monthly Archives: May 2011

I’m Alive, Awake, Alert, Enthusiastic! (ENERGIZER)


Time

5 minutes
Description

This energizer is fast, easy and takes little preparation, and it’s ideal for right after lunch or when you can sense the energy is draining out of the room.

Materials

  • Flipchart
  • Marker

Preparation

·      Write the words of the song on the flipchart.  They are:

  • “I’m alive, awake, alert, enthusiastic!”
  • “I’m alive, awake, alert, enthusiastic!”
  • “I’m alive, awake, alert…”
  • “Alert, awake, alive…”
  • “I’m alive, awake, alert, enthusiastic!”

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “Time for an energizer!”
  • “I’m going to sing through this song, and then I’m going to have you do it with me.”  (Sing the song all the way through.  It is sung to the tune of ‘If You’re Happy and You Know It, Clap Your Hands!’)
  • “Okay, everyone now!”  (Sing it all the way through.)
  • “Let’s do it again, but this time, I’m going to divide you into four groups.”  (Divide participants into four groups of roughly similar size.)
  • “This group is the ‘Alive’ group.” (Point out which group you mean.)
  • “This group is the ‘Awake” group.” (Point out which group you mean.)
  • “This group is the ‘Alert’ group.” (Point out which group you mean.)
  • “This group is the ‘Enthusiastic’ group.” (Point out which group you mean.)
  • “When we get to the part of the song with your word, you will say it as loud as you can, but the rest of the group will be silent.”
  • “Any questions?”  (Answer questions.  Then, have them sing the song again.  Point to the appropriate groups at the Alive, Awake, Alert and Enthusiastic words in the song.)
  • “One more time, but this time, you have to stand and yell your word.”  (Take them through it one more time and have them stand as they yell their word.  Then they should sit again until their word comes back up in the song.)
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Filed under Energizer, Fun, Icebreaker

Samson, Delilah and the Lion (ICEBREAKER)


Time

10 minutes

Description

This fun icebreaker can be an energizing way to get participants going, or you can use it to select people for certain activities.  It’s the familiar game of Rock, Paper, Scissors with a few twists.  This game is not played with just the hands – it’s a full-body activity.  And instead of using Rock, Paper and Scissors, participants act out Samson, Delilah and the Lion.

Scriptures

Judges 13-16 (but particularly 14:5-6 and chapter 16)

Materials

None

Preparation

None

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “Who knows how to play ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors?’”  (Even if some people know, you will need to give the full instructions if anyone is unfamiliar with the rules.)
  • “’Rock, Paper, Scissors’ is a fun game of competition.”
  • “Here’s how it works: two people compete to see who can beat the other.”
  • “After counting to three, each person chooses either ‘rock,’ ‘paper’ or ‘scissors.’”
  • “If both players choose the same thing, it’s a tie.”
  • “If players choose differently, then ‘rock’ beats ‘scissors,’ because a rock could break a pair of scissors.”
  • “’Scissors’ beats ‘paper,’ because a pair of scissors could cut the paper.”
  • “’Paper’ beats ‘rock,’ because a piece of paper could cover a rock.”
  • “Does that make sense to everyone?”
  • “’Rock’ beats ‘scissors;’ ‘scissors’ beats ‘paper;’ ‘paper’ beats ‘rock.’”  (If you need to, show them how to play the game with their hands.  Each player counts to three, and on “three” makes the sign for either ‘rock’ (balled fist), ‘scissors’ (separated index and middle fingers – like making “bunny ears”), or ‘paper’ (open hand).  Play a few rounds.)
  • “Now, I want to show you a new way to play.”
  • “Instead of using just your hands, we are going to use your entire bodies, and we’re going to use it to tell part of the story of Samson.”
  • “It works like this: in each round, you can choose to be Samson, Delilah or the Lion.”
  • “If you are Samson, you grunt and make a ‘muscle-man’ pose like this.”  (Demonstrate the pose by flexing your muscles.)
  • “If you are Delilah, you say, “Oooh, la, la,” put your hands on your hips and then shake your hips back and forth.”  (Demonstrate.)
  • “If you are the Lion, you “ROOOOOAAAAAR!’ show your fangs and your claws.”  (Demonstrate.)
  • “Samson beats the Lion; the Lion beats Delilah, and Delilah beats Samson.”
  • “Want to try?”
  • “Okay, everyone find a partner, and stand back-to-back.”
  • “I’m going to count to three.”
  • “When I get to three, both of you should jump around to face the other person and make both the sound and noise for either Samson, Delilah or the Lion.”
  • “ONE – TWO – THREE!”  (Do one or two rounds to make sure they get it.  Then, start eliminating players that lose.  If two players tie (choose the same strategy), both are out.  This will make sure that you always have an even number of people.  If you start with an uneven number of people, you can join the game until you are eliminated.)

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Filed under competition, Delilah, Game, Icebreaker, Samson

Symptoms, Sources, Solutions (GAME)


Audience

Teens, Adults

Time

20-30 minutes
Description

This game helps participants to understand a simple problem-solving model and to remember that we should always look for the Sources of the problem before we try to implement Solutions.

Scriptures

Isaiah 5:1-30

Materials

o  Symptoms-Sources-Solutions Cards (can be found at www.teachingthem.com on the Lesson and Material Downloads page in the file, “Symptoms-Sources-Solutions Cards.ppt” – you will need 6-10 sets (a set is made up of all three cards, Symptoms, Sources and Solutions) for every 3-5 participants.)

o  Card stock paper (preferred – you will need one sheet per set of cards that you print.  For example, if you have 20 participants and divide them into four groups of five, you will want to have at least 24 sets of the cards (this allows each group to have at least six sets of cards).  This would require 24 sheets of paper.)

o  Scissors or cutting tool

o  Flipchart and markers

o  Prizes for the winners (optional)

o  Bible (optional)

Preparation

o  Print out the Symptoms-Sources-Solutions cards.

o  Divide the number of sets (all three cards) you printed by the number of groups you will have in the class.

o  Cut out the cards.  (Each card should be cut out individually.  In other words, each Sources card, each Symptoms card and each, Solutions card should be separate from the others.  Make sure that you keep each group of cards separate from the others so that you don’t accidentally give one group an incomplete set.  Each group should have 6-10 complete sets (all three cards).)

o  Shuffle each group of cards so that they are in random order.  (Keep the groups separate from each other, and set them aside to be used during your workshop.)

o  Take the scrap pieces of paper or card stock, and divide them up evenly between the groups.  Groups will use these as “dividers” to separate each complete set of cards as they play the game.  Each team will need from 5-9 dividers, depending upon how many sets of cards you give them.

Procedure

Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):

  • “I have a simple problem solving model that I would like to share with you.”
  • “It’s called ‘Symptoms-Sources-Solutions.’”  (Sketch the tree on a flip chart or whiteboard as you talk.)
  • “Symptoms are the part of the problem that is obvious.  They are above the ground like the branches of this unhealthy tree.”  (Label the top of the tree, “Symptoms,” and make the tree look unhealthy, like the example on the Symptoms card.)
  • “Symptoms are the first things you notice about the problem, like when you get sick – the first things you notice are the Symptoms – a rash or a scratchy throat or a fever.”
  • “These things are not the real problem; they are just the evidence of the problem.”
  • “To find the real problem, you need to look for the Sources – the root of the problem.”  (Label the roots of the tree, “Sources,” and make them look unhealthy with skulls and crossbones (like the example on the Sources card) or in some other way.)
  • “A good doctor won’t just solve your Symptoms by giving you a pain killer, some cream and a bandage.”
  • “If that’s all he does, you might feel better for a little while, but your problem isn’t going to go away.”
  • “As soon as the pain killer wears off, the pain will be back, because the pain is just the messenger that tells you that the problem exists.”
  • “Symptoms are a messenger, and you don’t want to just hide the Symptoms.”
  • “You want to listen to what they are trying to tell you – that something is wrong and needs your attention!”
  • “A good doctor will look for the Source of the problem that the Symptoms point to, because he recognizes that Symptoms are a very helpful way of learning about a deeper problem.”
  • “Once he understands where the Symptoms are coming from, the doctor can prescribe a Solution that will get rid of the Symptoms by removing the Sources.” (Write “Solutions” in big letters over the tree.  Make the tree healthy by crossing out your skulls or other negative illustrations and drawing some fruit on the tree.)
  • “I would like for you to remember this model (Symptoms-Sources-Solutions) and how important it is to do the steps in the right order, so we’re going to play a game that will accomplish that.” (Hand out the stacks of cards facedown to each group.  Also, give each group a stack of 5-9 “dividers.”)
  • “Please leave the cards facedown.”
  • “The strips of paper that I gave you are ‘dividers’.”
  • “Please give these to one person at the table.”
  • “For the cards, one person should deal them out facedown to all remaining group members (other than the one who has the dividers).”   (Allow a moment for them to deal out the cards.)
  • “It’s okay if some people get more cards than others.  You will be working together as a team in this game.”
  • “There are three different types of cards that you have in front of you.”
  • “Some are Symptoms cards; Some are Sources cards and some are Solutions cards.”
  • “The objective of the game is to be the fastest team to assemble all your cards in the right order.”
  • “For example, when I signal the start of the game, each person will pick up the top card on his/her deck and look at it.”
  • “If it says, ‘Symptoms,’ that person will slap his or her card face-up in the center of the table.”
  • “Then, someone with a card that says, ‘Sources,’ will slap his or her card face-up on top of the Symptoms card.”
  • “Finally, someone with a ‘Solutions’ card will slap his or her card face-up on top of the Sources card.”
  • “This completes a set, so the person with the dividers should now slap down a divider strip to separate the first set of cards from the next set.”
  • “Once the divider slip is on top of the Solutions card, anyone who has a ‘Symptoms’ card can now slap it down face-up on the same pile.”
  • “You continue like this until all of the cards in everyone’s stacks are played.”
  • “Whenever you slap down a card, you can draw a new one off the top of your deck and look at it.”
  • “If someone mistakenly slaps down a card in the wrong order (for example, slapping a Solutions card on top of a Symptoms card), then he or she has to pick it back up off the pile in the center and put it facedown underneath his or her stack of cards.”
  • “If no one has the correct card in his or her hands, and no one can play, everyone must ‘burn’ their card (which means that they have to put it facedown underneath their stack of cards in front of them) and draw a new card.”
  • “When everyone finishes, groups should inspect their cards to make sure they are all in the right order with dividers between each complete set of three cards (Symptoms-Sources-Solutions).”
  • “Each set that is correctly laid is worth one point.”
  • “If they slapped any cards in the wrong order and didn’t notice until the end of the game, they lose one point for each incorrect set.”
  • “The team that has the highest points wins.”
  • “If there is a tie for points, then the team that finished earliest with the highest points wins.”
  • “What questions do you have?”  (Answer any questions.  Then let them play a round.  Award a prize for the winning group if you like.  You might want to let them play several times.  Then have them answer the following debrief questions.  NOTE: If you want to use the Scriptures linked to this game as a teaching point, have participants read Isaiah 5:20-25 and create a flipchart with a drawing of a tree.  Then, have them label the parts of the tree with the Symptoms and Sources of the problem.  They can also list God’s Solutions to the problem and brainstorm alternative Solutions that Jerusalem and Judah could have enacted that would have resolved the Sources and eliminated the Symptoms in a more positive way.)

 

Debrief Questions

  1. What was difficult about the game?
  2. What comparisons can you make between the challenges in the game and the challenges related to problem solving in real life?
  3. What do you think are some of the consequences of going straight from Symptoms to Solutions in real-life problem solving?
  4. How can you prevent this from happening?
  5. What lessons can you take away from the Symptoms-Sources-Solutions model and game?

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Filed under Challenges, competition, Decision making, Game, Games that Teach, Needs Analysis, Overcoming obstacles, Performance, Problem solving, Solutions

Learning Transfer (EXERCISE)


Audience
Children, Teens or Adults

Time
30 minutes

Description
This activity helps teachers, presenters, facilitators and trainers recognize the inherent challenges in teaching as we compete against our audiences’ or participants’ mental barriers to learning transfer.  This exercise can be presented as a “game,” but it is more of a “gotcha” in which participants are set up to fail in order to emphasize the learning point.

Materials
•    Notecards (approximately 30 for every two people)
•    Marker or pen (one for every two people)
•    Article (There is one at the end of this lesson.  You may want to choose a different article better suited to your participants’ level of knowledge.  It should be written with unfamiliar vocabulary in order to provide a challenge in understanding the message.)
•    Quiz with 10-15 questions and answers (There is one at the end of this lesson, or you can prepare your own based on the article that you choose.)
•    Prizes (optional)

Preparation
•    Read through the article to make sure you are familiar with it.
•    Create your quiz if you are using a different article than the one provided.
•    Divide the group into pairs, and give each pair a marker/pen and a stack of the notecards.
•    Ask someone to be your ‘Distractor’ – the person who will steal ideas from Short-Term Memory

Procedure
Use the following script, or modify to suit your needs:
•    “Brain research shows that the short-term memory is only able to hold seven pieces of information at any one time and that it can only hold each piece of information for about 20 seconds.”
•    “In that 20 seconds, your short-term memory is doing three things:

1.    Trying to understand (“decode”) the message
2.    Dealing with distractions
3.    Learning and transferring the information to long-term memory”

•    “In order to learn new things, you have to overcome challenges in understanding the message and dealing with distractions, and you only have 20 seconds to do it with each piece of information.”
•    “If you don’t learn that information and transfer it to long-term memory in 20 seconds, your brain dumps it and replaces it with something else.”
•    “If more than seven pieces of new information are presented to you at one time, your short-term memory will dump new information even faster as new information replaces ‘old’ information.”
•    “It’s amazing that we ever learn anything, right?”
•    “For teachers, presenters, facilitators and trainers, this is a challenge to how we typically present things we want people to learn.”
•    “If we cover the information too quickly, they won’t get it.”
•    “If we don’t make it simple enough for them to quickly understand it, they won’t get it.”
•    “If they are distracted by fellow students, personal problems, discomfort, irritating habits that the trainer has, etc…, they won’t get it.”
•    “Let’s play a game that will demonstrate how tough this really is.”
•    “I’ve divided you into pairs and given each pair a stack of notecards and a pen/marker.”
•    “In your pairs, select one person to be ‘Short-Term Memory (STM)’ and one person to be ‘Long-Term Memory (LTM).’” (Allow time for them to select roles.)
•    “I’m going to read an article out loud.”
•    “As I read, STM will use the pen/marker and the notecards to write down the most important ideas from the article.”
•    “I won’t tell you what those ideas are.  You have to decide for yourself.”
•    “Once STM has written the idea down, he/she will hand it to LTM.”
•    “LTM will take the idea, read it and place it face-down in front of him/her.”
•    “It doesn’t matter how LTM chooses to organize the ideas.  That’s up to him/her.”
•    “When STM writes down an idea, that represents understanding the information (decoding).”
•    “When STM hands the idea to LTM, that represents learning transfer.”
•    “That alone will be challenging, but there’s one additional challenge you will have to deal with.”
•    “I’ve asked ______ to be our ‘Distractor.’”
•    “His/her job is to walk around the room and steal ideas away from STM.”
•    “Distractor can take the idea when it’s being written or when it’s being passed.”
•    “The idea isn’t safe until it is face-down in front of LTM.”
•    “If Distractor tries to steal an idea, you have to give it to him/her – he/she is much too powerful for you!”
•    “If Distractor steals and idea, STM can rewrite it if he/she wants to, or he/she can skip it and move on to the next idea.”
•    “At the end of the game, you will be given a test.”
•    “After I ask each question about the article, LTM will have three chances to find the card that has that information on it.”
•    “STM is not allowed to help.”
•    “It’s possible that LTM won’t even have the answer, since LTM was dependent on STM to write down the correct ideas.”
•    “If LTM picks up the wrong card, he/she should return it face-down to the table.”
•    “If
•    LTM picks up the right card, he/she can put it to the side.  It counts as one point.”
•    “The team with the most points at the end of the test wins.”
•    “What questions do you have?”  (Answer any questions.)
•    “Okay, let’s play!”  (Read the article at a normal pace as the STMs write down the most important parts.  ‘Distractor’ should roam around the pairs stealing ideas when possible but not taking so many that it completely discourages the participants.  When you are done, give the test.  After the test, find out which team has the most points, and award a prize if you wish.  Then, have the participants discuss the following debrief questions in their original groups or in their pairs.  Debrief as a large group.)

Debrief
o    What made that difficult?
o    How was that like the challenge a learner faces when he/she hears new information?
o    What could we do to help more information move successfully between STM and LTM?

Quiz
1)    What do shadow puppet craftsmen typically use to smooth out the puppets? (a glass bottle)
2)    What is the Indonesian term for ‘shadow puppets?’ (wayang kulit)
3)    Less expensive puppets that are sold to children during shows are typically made of what? (cardboard)
4)    The Punakawan is a family of characters in Javanese shadow puppets, and they are often referred to as what?  (clown-servants)
5)    What are three sources for the shadow puppet stories? (the Ramayana, the Mahabharata or the Serat Menak)
6)    What tools did shadow puppet theater traditionally use to project and display the image of the puppets? (cotton screen and an oil lamp)
7)    What is the most common light sources used today to project the shadow puppets’ images in Java? (halogen electric lights)
8)    What is the Indonesian word for ‘skin?’  (kulit)
9)    Which city in Central Java is most famous for its style of puppets? (Surakarta or Solo)
10)    Which parts on the shadow puppet typically move? (upper and lower arms)
11)    How long does it take a crew of craftsmen to make ten shadow puppets? (one week)
12)    Puppets are supported with carefully shaped __________ and control rods. (buffalo horn handles)

ARTICLE – “Wayang Kulit”
(Source – Wikipedia)

Wayang kulit, shadow puppets prevalent in Java and Bali in Indonesia, are without a doubt the best known of the Indonesian wayang. Kulit means skin, and refers to the leather construction of the puppets that are carefully chiselled with very fine tools and supported with carefully shaped buffalo horn handles and control rods.

The stories are usually drawn from the Ramayana, the Mahabharata or the Serat Menak.

There is a family of characters in Javanese wayang called Punakawan; they are sometimes referred to as “clown-servants” because they normally are associated with the story’s hero, and provide humorous and philosophical interludes. Semar is the father of Gareng (oldest son), Petruk, and Bagong (youngest son). These characters did not originate in the Hindu epics, but were added later, possibly to introduce mystical aspects of Islam into the Hindu-Javanese stories. They provide something akin to a political cabaret, dealing with gossip and contemporary affairs.

The puppet figures themselves vary from place to place. In Central Java the city of Surakarta (Solo) is most famous and is the most commonly imitated style of puppets. Regional styles of shadow puppets can also be found in West Java, Banyumas, Cirebon, Semarang, and East Java. Bali produces more compact and naturalistic figures, and Lombok has figures representing real people. Often modern-world objects as bicycles, automobiles, airplanes and ships will be added for comic effect, but for the most part the traditional puppet designs have changed little in the last 300 years.

Historically, the performance consisted of shadows cast on a cotton screen and an oil lamp. Today, the source of light used in wayang performance in Java is most often a halogen electric light. Some modern forms of wayang such as Wayang Sandosa created in the Art Academy at Surakarta (STSI) has employed spotlights, colored lights and other innovations.

The handwork involved in making a wayang kulit figure that is suitable for a performance takes several weeks, with the artists working together in groups. They start from master models (typically on paper) which are traced out onto kulit (skin or parchment), providing the figures with an outline and with indications of any holes that will need to be cut (such as for the mouth or eyes). The figures are then smoothed, usually with a glass bottle, and primed. The structure is inspected and eventually the details are worked through. A further smoothing follows before individual painting, which is undertaken by yet another craftsman. Finally, the movable parts (upper arms, lower arms with hands and the associated sticks for manipulation) mounted on the body, which has a central staff by which it is held. A crew makes up to ten figures at a time, typically completing that number over the course of a week.

The painting of less expensive puppets is handled expediently with a spray technique, using templates, and with a different person handling each color. Less expensive puppets, often sold to children during performances, are sometimes made on cardboard instead of leather.

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Filed under activity, distractions, exercise, Game, Games that Teach, learning, memory, Mind, Overcoming obstacles, thinking, thoughts