Tag Archives: exercise

Breaking Out of the Silos (EXERCISE)


Purpose

This activity helps participants to challenge silo mentalities by forcing them to work collaboratively to complete a task.  The task is a painting task, in which each team (or individual) will only receive some of the colors they need to finish.  In order to meet all the requirements of the task, they will have to negotiate for resources from other teams or individuals.

 

Setup

  • Give each team (or individual, depending upon the size of your group) several colors of paint (poster paints work well).
  • Teams or individuals should get different color combinations so that no one group or individual has everything that he or she needs.  Recommended color combinations are:
    • Team #1 – Black, white, red and yellow
    • Team #2 – Black, white, blue and yellow
    • Team #3 – Black, white, green and yellow
    • Team #4 – Black, white, red and blue
  • Give each team or individual enough paintbrushes for each team member to participate in the painting, a large sheet of paper (a flipchart works well for groups), something to mix their paint on (a piece of cardboard or a paper plate) and several small cups with water in them for rinsing the paint brush.

Timing

Explaining the Exercise: 5 minutes.

Activity: 20 minutes

Debrief: 15 minutes.

 

Procedure

  • Tell participants that they are going to work in their teams to produce a work of art with the supplies that you have given them.
  • To be judged successful, each team or individual must paint a picture of Noah’s Ark complete with the rainbow that was God’s promise never to flood the earth again. (You can choose another theme if you like; the only essential element is the rainbow, because it uses all the color combinations that will force the teams to break out of their silos.)
  • The rainbow must be at least one-third of the picture, and it must contain all the colors of a rainbow (which can be remembered with the acronym ROYGBIV – Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet).
  • The picture must fill the paper.
  • They will have 20 minutes to complete their paintings.
  • (After they begin, observe how they solve the problem of not having all the right color combinations for the rainbow.  You may want to bring out your observations during the debrief.  When the 20 minutes are up, have the groups answer the debrief questions below.  Then, discuss their insights as a large group.  Emphasize the need to share limited resources so that everyone could succeed.  This is not a competitive activity.)

Debrief

  • How did you resolve the problem of not having enough colors to make all the colors of the rainbow?
  • How willing were the other teams to share their paint with you?
  • How willing were you to share your paint with them?
  • Why was this difficult at times?
  • How is this like sharing limited resources in the work environment?
  • What could you do to make it more likely that individuals and groups would share their resources for the greater good of the organization?
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Filed under Abundance, generosity, Overcoming obstacles, Performance, Problem solving, Productivity, Resources, Scarcity, team, teambuilding, teamwork

Negotiation Game (GAME)


Audience

Children, Teens, Adults

Time

30-40 minutes (longer if you use the Bible study at the end)
Description

This game teaches about negotiation skills and going for win-win.  It has elements of a “Gotcha” activity (an activity where participants are set-up to fail in order to create an awareness of a learning need).  Teams compete with each other and often end up doing worse overall than they could have done if they had cooperated and gone for win-win.

Scriptures

o  Genesis 18:1-33

Materials

o  Flipchart and marker

o  Notecards that say “Win-Win” on one side and “Win-Lose” on the other (one per team)

o  (Optional) Projector, Computer and Screen to display PowerPoint slides with the rules and the debriefing questions.  You can access these by downloading the file “Negotiation Game – Slides” on the Lesson and Material Downloads page at http://www.teachingthem.com.)

o  (Optional) Prizes for the highest-scoring team.

o  Bible

Preparation

o  Write “Win-Win” on one side of each of the notecards.

o  Write “Win-Lose” on the other side of the same notecards.

o  Draw a score chart on the flipchart.  It should look like this (add more columns if you have more teams):

Team #1 Team #2 Team #3 Team #4
WW / WL Points WW / WL Points WW / WL Points WW / WL Points
Round 1
Round 2
Total After 2 Rounds
Round 3
Total After 3 Rounds
Round 4
Total After 4 Rounds
Round 5
Final Score

Procedure

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

  • “Let’s play a game about negotiation.”
  • “In this game, your team will have two choices: go for Win-Win or go for Win-Lose.”
  • “Win-Win means that you want to win but only if the other teams can win, too.”
  • “Win-Lose means that you want to win even if it means that another team might have to lose.”
  • “In a perfect world, we would always go for Win-Win, but this isn’t a perfect world.”
  • “I’m going to give you incentives for going for Win-Lose that will make you have to think hard about what you want to do.”  (Share slides on the PowerPoint if you want to.)
  • “Each round, your team will decide if it wants to go for Win-Win or Win-Lose.”
  • “You will make your decision known by holding up this card.” (Show one of the notecards, and show both sides so that they can see their choices.  Pass out one card to each team.)
  • “If ALL the teams go for Win-Win, the facilitator gives each team 100 points.”
  • “If more than half the teams go for Win-Lose, the facilitator takes away 100 points from every team.”
  • “But if less than half the teams go for Win-Lose, the facilitator gives the Win-Lose teams 200 points and takes away100 points from the Win-Win teams.”
  • “We will play five rounds.”
  • “Each team should now select a Negotiator.”
  • “This person will meet with the Negotiators from the other teams before each round and have three minutes to come to an agreement about what strategy to take.”  (Allow teams to select a Negotiator.  This person will have to be the Negotiator for the entire game.)
  • “What questions do you have before we start to play?”  (Answer questions.  Then, give the Negotiators time to meet outside the room for three minutes.  Afterward, have them come back to their teams.  On the count of three, have the Negotiator on each team raise their card with the side that has their choice (Win-Win or Win-Lose) facing you.  Record these choices on the flipchart, and assign scores to each team.  Then, allow 5 minutes for the team to discuss changes to their strategy before starting the process over again and sending the Negotiators outside the room.  Run all five founds.  If everyone is choosing Win-Win, you can add pressure by doubling the point amounts for a particular round.  When you’ve finished the game, award a prize for the highest scoring team if you want and have the teams discuss the Debriefing Questions below (and also on the 2nd PowerPoint slide.)

Debriefing Questions

• What makes the win-win strategy difficult?

• What are the problems with the win-lose strategy?

• How should we handle it when we are going for win-win, and someone takes advantage of us?

• Why should we strive for the win-win strategy?

Idea for Bible Lesson

If you want to do this game is connection with a Bible lesson, try having participants read Genesis 18 and answer the following questions:

1.    What did Abraham do before the negotiation that helped make it successful?

2.    What did Abraham do during the negotiation that helped make it successful?

3.    Was Abraham going for Win-Win or something else?  Why do you think so?

4.    Why do you think Abraham stopped at ten?

5.    Could he have gotten the Lord to agree to a lower number?  Why do you think so?

6.    What practices of good negotiation can you use in your negotiations?

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Filed under Abraham, Abram, competition, Game, Games that Teach, Intercession, Negotiation

Name That Christmas Carol (ACTIVITY)


Time

15-20 minutes

Description

This is a fun activity to play during Christmastime.  Participants try to guess familiar Christmas carols from the complicated synonyms on the worksheet.

Scriptures

  • None

Materials

  • Worksheet (attached)
  • Something for each participant to write with

Preparation

  • Print copies of the worksheet (one per participant or one per team)
  • Practice the script.

Procedure

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

o  “Let’s do a Christmas activity!”

o  “Get out your Thesaurus, or this could get ugly.”  (Hand out worksheets and writing utensils to each participant or team.)

o  “Try to determine what Christmas Carol is represented by the strange synonyms.”

o  “I have the answers in case you get stumped.”  (All participants or teams to work on the puzzles for 10-15 minutes.   Then share the answers with them.  You can make this a competition if you like.)

Answers:

1.  White Christmas; 2.  Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire; 3.  All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth; 4.  O Holy Night; 5.  It Came Upon a Midnight Clear; 6.  O Come, All Ye Faithful; 7.  Away in a Manger; 8.  Deck the Hall; 9.  Little Drummer Boy; 10. We Three Kings; 11. Silent Night; 12. God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen; 13. Santa Claus is Coming to Town; 14. Let it Snow; 15. Go, Tell It on the Mountain; 16. Rudolph, the Red-nosed Reindeer; 17. What Child is This?; 18. Joy to the World; 19. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; 20. The Twelve Days of Christmas

Name That Christmas Carol

1.     Bleached Yule

2.     Castaneous-colored Seed Vesicated in a Conflagration

3.     Singular Yearning for the Twin Anterior Incisors

4.     Righteous Darkness

5.     Arrival Time 2400 hrs – Weather Cloudless

6.     Loyal Followers Advance

7.     Far Off in a Feeder

8.     Array the Corridor

9.     Bantam Male Percussionist

10.  Monarchial Triad

11.  Nocturnal Noiselessness

12.  Jehovah Deactivate Blithe Chevaliers

13.  Red Man En Route to Borough

14.  Frozen Precipitation Commence

15.  Proceed and Enlighten on the Pinnacle

16.  The Quadruped with the Vermillion Proboscis

17.  Query Regarding Identity of Descendant

18.  Delight for this Planet

19.  Give Attention to the Melodious Celestial Beings

20.  The Dozen Festive 24 Hour Intervals

(S – “Kitty’s Daily Mews” kittysdailymews-subscribe@topica.com)

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Filed under Christianity, Christmas, Game, Icebreaker

God’s Dream


Time

45-60 minutes

Description

This is game that helps participants understand that God’s dream for their lives has to be discovered and that it usually requires the help of others to complete.  It was developed for adults but can be modified for use with children (see ideas at the end of the lesson).

 

Materials

  • Large puzzles with at least 50 pieces each (The puzzles can be different, but they should be similar in size and shape.)
  • Masking tape
  • Ziplock bags (optional)
  • Signs that say, “MENTOR.” (One per table group.)
  • Prizes for the winning team (optional)
  • Flipchart, whiteboard (and markers) or LCD projector and screen

 

Preparation

·      Teams should be arranged at tables with 6-8 participants each.

·      Open each puzzle and remove 10-12 pieces.

·      Mix these up.

·      Carefully tape four pieces (each) to the bottom of different chairs around the room.  (You might want to put them in a Ziplock bag to protect the pieces.)  Make sure that they cannot be seen.  Each of these chairs should have pieces from several different puzzles taped underneath.

·      Label the back of these chairs, “MENTOR” (just one per table – if you have more pieces than will fit under the “MENTOR” chairs, tape them under other chairs, but don’t label those chairs, “MENTOR.”)

·      Take any remaining pieces (that you pulled from the puzzles) and mix them in with other puzzles around the room.

·      Put the rest of the puzzle pieces in a bag or box (but not a box with the picture on it) in the center of each table.

·      Keep the pictures of the completed puzzle in the teaching area at the front of the room.

·      Flipchart the Debrief Questions at the end of this lesson (but keep them hidden until the activity is done).

·      Practice the script.

 

Procedure

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

·      “We’re going to put some puzzles together.”

·      “These puzzles represent God’s dream for your life.”

·      “At your tables, one of the chairs says, “MENTOR,” on the back.  Those of you sitting in those seats are now the “Mentors” for your teams.”

·      “Can I see the “Mentors” outside the room for a minute?”  (Go outside room with “Mentors” and tell them about the hidden pieces under their chairs.  Ask them not to reveal this secret unless someone (from any table) specifically asks them about the missing pieces.  If they are asked any other question, they can answer it as long as it doesn’t reveal that there are hidden pieces under their chairs.  They are not to participate in the puzzle building unless asked to do so.  Also, let the “Mentors” know that you have the pictures of the completed puzzles at the teaching area in the front.  If anyone asks about them, the “Mentors” can come get the pictures and take them back to their tables.  Allow the “Mentors” to return to their groups.)

·      “Okay, you can start putting your puzzles together.  The first team to finish wins!”  (Allow at least 30 minutes for puzzle building.  If a team finishes, observe whether or not they try to help other teams.  If no one asks the “Mentors” about the missing pieces after 20 minutes, you can drop some hints until they catch on.  When everyone is done, award prizes (optional) and ask the teams to work through the debrief questions on the flipchart.  Allow 15 minutes.  Then do a large group debrief on what lessons they will take away from the activity.)

 

Debrief Questions

o   “What helped or hindered your team’s success?”

o   “What might you do differently if you had it to do over again?”

o   “Were the mentors important in completing the puzzle?  Why or why not?”

o   “If the puzzles represent God’s dream for your life, what do the pieces under the chairs represent?”

§  “How could this be a metaphor for the way God reveals His will?”

§  “What do the pieces at other tables represent?”

§  “What do the pieces that didn’t fit into your puzzle represent?”

o   “Did anyone try to determine if someone at the table was actually skilled at putting puzzles together?” 

§  “Why or why not?”

§  “Does this say anything about the way we approach the subject of mentors?  Explain.”

o   “How important are other people in solving our problems?”

o   “What lessons can you take away from this activity?”

 

Possible Modifications for Children

·      When working with children, consider the following changes to make it more relevant for them:

o   Instead of having “MENTORS,” you might label the chairs “PARENTS,” “TEACHERS,” or “CHRISTIAN FRIENDS.”

o   Rather than do a debrief at table groups, you might prefer to lead the questions from the front of the room in order to keep the children focused.

o   Some other debriefing questions you might ask could be:

§  “How does God show us His plan for our lives?”

§  “Why doesn’t God just tell us His whole plan when we are young?”

§  “Why does God give some of the pieces of our puzzle to other people?”

§  “Have you ever helped someone discover a piece of their own puzzle?” 

·      “How did that feel?”

·      “How did you find out that you had a piece of their puzzle?”

o   You might have the children finish by drawing pictures of God’s dream for their lives.

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Filed under Christianity, Game, Games that Teach, God's dream, God's Plan, God's Will, Hands-on

Spiritual Cadence


Time

20 minutes

Description

This object lesson is a fun way to reinforce some truths about Jesus, the Bible and the Gospel message. It’s a cadence much like the ones military groups might use during exercise. You can use it when outdoors with the kids or in a classroom setting.

Materials

None are necessary, but you might want to post the rhymes so that the kids can remember them more easily. In that case, you might need a flipchart and markers or PowerPoints and an LCD projector. Since you will be calling these out, it’s helpful to have the cadences written on note cards for your own use.

Preparation

· Make slides of the rhymes or prepare flipcharts

· Prepare note cards if you plan to use them.

· Practice the script.

Procedure

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

  • “We’re going to do a fun review activity today that will help us remember some important things about Jesus, the Bible and the Gospel.”
  • “It’s a cadence. Does anyone know what that is?” (Take responses)
  • “A cadence is a rhythmic pattern of sounds or words. It helps establish a beat, like in music, and it’s good for helping groups of people to do something physical all at the same time. Military groups often use cadences to help them march or exercise in unison.”
  • “Here’s the way a cadence might sounds when they do it in the military: (Try to find the rhythm as you call these out. Your speed should match the speed of a group of soldiers marching. Typically, the leader will draw out the last word. So, instead of “told!” on this first rhyme, it would sound more like, “tooooold!”)

I don’t know, but I’ve been told!

(Children repeat)

The sun shines bright, but I’m still cold!

(Children repeat)

I don’t know, but it’s been said!

(Children repeat)

We might all freeze ‘fore we get to bed!

(Children repeat)

(Instructor) Sound off! (Children ) One – two.

(Instructor) Sound off! (Children ) Three – four.

(Instructor) Sound off! (Both) One – two – three – four….THREE! FOUR!”

  • “So, since these are usually done with some type of physical activity, we are going to get up do some marching while I teach you this cadence.” (Have children stand up and either march in place or follow you as you march around the room.)
  • “We will follow the same pattern as the military cadence, but we are going to use rhymes that give God glory. Try repeating after me:

I surely know, and I have heard!

(Children repeat)

The Bible is God’s Holy Word!

(Children repeat)

I surely know, and I believe it’s true!

(Children repeat)

Jesus gave His life for you!

(Children repeat)

(Instructor) Sound off! (Children ) One – two.

(Instructor) Sound off! (Children ) Three – four.

(Instructor) Sound off! (Both) One – two – three – four….THREE! FOUR!”

· “Excellent work, soldiers! Let’s try some more!” (Use any or all of the following cadences, or make up some of your own. To really get the kids involved, you might ask them to come back the next teaching time with some new cadences of their own.)


Gospel Cadence

I surely know and can say in one breath!

The wages of our sin is death!

I surely know, yes, I’m on track!

We owed too much to pay it back!

I surely know, and it’s time to tell!

All our souls were bound for Hell!

I surely know, please understand!

God loves us; He had a plan!

I surely know, and for what it’s worth

Jesus was born of virgin birth!

I surely know for us to win!

Jesus lived here without sin!

I surely know, and I hope you see!

Jesus hung up on a tree!

I surely know, and I’ve heard account!

Jesus paid the whole amount!

I surely know, and I’ve heard it said!

Jesus Christ rose from the dead!

I surely know, and I can say!

Jesus is the only Way!”

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Filed under Adoration, Christianity, Gospel, Hands-on, Object Lesson, Praise

Feed Your Spirit


Time

15-20 minutes

Description

This object lesson teaches that you need to take care of your spirit each day, just like you need to take care of your body. Some assembly is required.

Materials

  • Two fans that can pivot to blow towards the ceiling
  • 3-4 wind socks or plastic table cloth (Windbags from Steve Spangler Science also work great. You can order them online at www.stevespanglerscience.com.)
  • Packaging tape or duct tape
  • Permanent marker
  • Electric power strip or extension cord
  • A few sheets of paper

Preparation

· You are going to create two mini-air dancers (like what were used at the Olympics in Atlanta or commonly in front of retail establishments).

Wind Sock or Windbag

· If you are using a wind sock or a Windbag, cut the cylinder down so that it is no more than three feet tall.

· You will need to tape up the hole at one end and cut two slits about 2/3rd of the way along the windsock for the arms.

· Do this with two of the wind socks. These are your “body” pieces.

· With the remaining two wind socks, cut them each in half to make the arms.

· Tape one end of the “arms” so that air can’t escape.

· Tape the open end over one of the slits in the “body” piece.

· Use the permanent marker to draw a smiling face near the top of the “body” piece.

· Tape the open end of the “body” piece over one of the fans so that air will blow directly into the body.

· Label one air dancer, “Body,” and one, “Spirit.”

· Practice the script, and test your air dancers for leaks and proper inflation.

Table Cloth

· If you are using a table cloth, you will follow all the same instructions as above with a few exceptions.

· Cut out your air dancer – 3 feet long by 18 inches wide.

· Roll it into a cylinder (the 18-inch wide part) and tape up the seam.

· Follow all the other instructions.


Procedure

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

  • (Start with your air dancers on a table next to each other – with a little elbow room for their soon-to-be-inflated arms. The fans should be off (but plugged in!), and the dancers should be deflated. Invite two volunteers up to the table.)
  • “Hi, guys! I’m wondering if you can help me with an object lesson.”
  • “Do you see these two balloon-like bags taped to these fans?”
  • “Well they are actually balloon people, and they represent the two major parts of each one of us.” (Ask volunteers to each read out loud the label on the front of the air dancer in front of them – one is “Body” and the other is “Spirit.”)
  • “Right! This one represents our Body, and this one represents our Spirit.”
  • “Would you say that those are two pretty important parts of each one of us?”
  • “Me, too!”
  • “We’ve got a problem, though. Neither one of these guys is doing so good right now. They are really low on energy.”
  • (Turn to the volunteer in front of the “Body” air dancer.)
  • “What do you think the balloon person representing our Body needs in order to feel better?” (Take ideas, and fill in any that are missed.)
  • “Right! It needs food, rest and exercise to feel good.”
  • “If you don’t get enough food, how do you feel?” (Encourage response.)
  • “How about if you don’t get enough rest?” (Encourage response.)
  • “You feel kinda like this balloon, don’t you?”
  • “Well, let’s say that this fan underneath the balloon person represents those things – food, rest and exercise.”
  • “Could you turn that fan on for me?” (Allow volunteer to turn on fan. Air dancer should inflate.)
  • “Wow! That’s better! When our Body gets food, rest and exercise, it feels good. It has energy.”
  • “But what would happen if you stop feeding it or if you stopped getting enough rest or exercise?” (Encourage response. Then have volunteer turn off fan to demonstrate.)
  • “Exactly! Our Bodies start to feel bad, and they lose energy. If you go too long without these things, your Body gets sick, right?”
  • “You’ve got to give it more food, rest and exercise for it to feel good again.” (Have volunteer turn on fan.)
  • (Turn to the volunteer in front of the “Spirit” air dancer.)
  • “Now, how about our Spirit? It doesn’t need food or rest or exercise to feel good. What do you think it needs?” (Take ideas, and fill in any that are missed.)
  • “That’s right! It needs prayer, Scripture, worship, fellowship and other good spiritual disciplines.”
  • “How do you think our Spirit feels when it isn’t getting those things?” (Encourage response.)
  • “Right! It feels terrible – maybe like this balloon person.”
  • “How do you think it feels when it does get prayer and Scripture and worship and fellowship?” (Encourage response. Then have volunteer turn on fan to demonstrate.)
  • “When it gets those things, it feels really good!”
  • “But I’m a little confused. I know when my body needs food or rest (and sometimes exercise), because it tells me.”
  • (Turn to the volunteer in front of the “Body” air dancer.)
  • “How would you say our body tells us what it needs?” (Encourage responses like “hunger pains,” “yawning” or “sleepiness.”)
  • “But how do I know when my Spirit needs prayer and Scripture and worship and fellowship? Does it tell me somehow?” (Encourage responses, but you will probably have to help with this one.)
  • “This one is tougher, because we aren’t as used to paying attention to our Spirit as we are to paying attention to our Body, but here’s what I think.”
  • “When our Spirit is feeling weak, we can tell because sometimes:
    • We are tempted by more bad things.
    • It is harder to say “no” to temptation.
    • We feel bad about ourselves.
    • We want to hide from God.
    • We worry a lot and are afraid.
    • We aren’t very nice to other people.”
  • “Have any of you ever felt like any of these examples?” ?” (Encourage responses from the entire class.)
  • “If you’re like me, sometimes you let days go by without praying or reading Gods’ Word.” (Have volunteer turn fan off.)
  • “I can go for a little while on the prayer and Bible reading that I did last week, but eventually, my Spirit starts to sag.”
  • “Then maybe I miss a week of going to church or do some things I know that I shouldn’t have done.”
  • “Before long, my Spirit gets sick, and it becomes harder and harder for me to say “no” to the things that I am tempted to do.”
  • “I’ve known people whose Spirits were really sick, because they never fed them.”
  • “They knew that something was wrong in their life, but they tried to fix it by feeding their Spirit the wrong things – like money or expensive things or too much entertainment or sometimes even drugs and alcohol.”
  • “But none of those things helps your Spirit to feel better.”
  • (Turn to the volunteer in front of the “Spirit” air dancer.)
  • “Remind me again. What does our Spirit need to stay healthy?” (Encourage responses. Then have the volunteer turn on the fan.)
  • “Exactly! We need prayer, Scripture, worship, fellowship and other good spiritual disciplines.”
  • “If we’re going to do good things for God, we need a healthy Spirit like this one.” (Pointing to air dancer.)
  • “So, let’s all try to feed our Spirit the things it wants before it even has to ask us for them!” (Thank and dismiss volunteers.)

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Filed under Christianity, Coping skills, Fear, Object Lesson, spiritual disciplines, temptation, Worry