Tag Archives: obstacles

Parking Lot (GAME)


Time

15-20 minutes
Description

This game forces team members to work together in order to solve logic puzzles.  Team members will work puzzles representing cars parked irregularly in a square parking lot.  There is only one way out, and they must coordinate their movements so that their “car” is able to make it off the lot.

Scriptures

These Scriptures are provided as possible context for talking about the topics of problem solving or collaboration, but they aren’t essential to the activity.  Use them if they suit your purposes.

  • 1 Kings 3:16-28 (creative problem solving)
  • Daniel 5:12 (solve difficult problems)
  • Nehemiah 2:11-18, 4, 5 or 6 (creative problem solving)
  • Nehemiah 3:1-32 (collaboration)

 

Materials

The amount of materials you will need for this game will depend largely on the size of your group and how many small groups you need to create.

  • For each group of 4-6 people – Posterboard, futureboard or cardboard (One white piece, and one light-colored piece. Use the size that is readily available in the stores – about 2 ft tall x 2.5 ft wide)
  • Thick, black, permanent marker
  • Ruler
  • Straight-edge for drawing lines (optional)
  • Scissors or cutting tool
  • One copy per team of each of the puzzle patterns and answer keys in the file “GAME – Parking Lot – Patterns.pptx.”  (You can find this file on the Lesson and Material Downloads page at www.teachingthem.com.  Alternately, you could project an image of each of the patterns using a Computer, LCD projector and screen.)
  • Prizes for winning teams (Optional)

 

Preparation

  • With the permanent marker and the straight edge, mark off a large square on the white posterboard, futureboard or cardboard.  (24 in x 24 in).
  • Divide this square into six squares vertically and six squares horizontally using the ruler, and mark off the lines with the permanent marker.  (Each square should be 4 in x 4 in.)
  • Mark an arrow, pointing to the right in the square on the far right on the third row from the top.  (See the diagram to the left for a better idea of what this looks like.)
  • On the light-colored posterboard, futureboard or cardboard, measure and mark off nine, rectangular pieces according to the following dimensions:
    • 3 pieces of 4 in tall x 12 in wide
    • 6 pieces of 4 in tall x 8 in wide
  • Cut these pieces out.
  • Mark diagonal stripes down one of the 4 in tall x 8 in wide pieces of posterboard, futureboard or cardboard.
  • Divide the group into smaller groups of 4-6 people each.
  • Practice the script.

Procedure

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

  • “We’re going to play a game called, ‘Parking Lot.’”
  • “Every team has a white game board with 24 squares on it and nine separate pieces of posterboard (or futureboard or cardboard).”
  • “You’ll notice that one of your pieces has diagonal lines drawn across it.  This is YOUR car.”
  • “All the other pieces represent ‘cars’ that belong to other people.  Some are bigger cars than the others.”
  • “The white game board represents a parking lot.”
  • “I’m going to hand you a pattern (or “show you a pattern on the screen”), and your group should lay the separate pieces on your game board to match the pattern.”
  • “You will only need eight of the pieces, because one of the pieces will be used for later patterns after the first one.”
  • “Once you have duplicated the pattern on your game board, you will then work as a team to get your car out of the parking lot.”
  • “There is only one way out, and it’s marked with an arrow on your game board.”
  • “To get your car through the exit, you will have to move the other cars up and down or right and left to get them out of the way.”
  • “None of the cars can turn, and they can’t move sideways.”
  • “If they are facing vertically, they can only move vertically.  If they are facing horizontally, they can only move horizontally.”
  • “They cannot go through or over or under another car, but if there isn’t a car in the way, they can move as many unoccupied spaces as possible.”
  • “The last rule is that you can only move one car at a time and only when I tell you to move.”
  • “The team that gets their car out of the parking lot with the fewest moves wins.”
  • “What questions do you have before we get started?” 
  • (Answer any questions.  Then, pass out the first pattern.  Allow groups three minutes to form a strategy, and then remind them that each team will move together as you give the signal.)
  • (Tell them to make their first move.  When everyone has made it, tell them to make their second move, and so on, until a group gets their car free.) 
  • (After you have allowed them to make 20 moves, if no team has won, you may want to let them start over.  None of the puzzles require more than 20 moves.) 
  • (Hand out copies of the Answer Key for each puzzle so that teams that didn’t complete it can see how it is done.)
  • (Award a prize for the winning team if you like, and play another round by handing out a second pattern.)
  • (There are a total of six patterns available for use in the file. There are also Debrief Questions to highlight the teaching points.)

 

Debrief Questions & Discussion

  1. “What was challenging about the game?”
  2. “What did your team have to do to get your car free each time?”
  3. “What can you learn about problem solving from this activity?”
  4. “What can you learn about collaboration?”
  5. “How can this help you back in the real world of challenging problems?”
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Filed under Collaboration, creativity, Game, Problem solving, teamwork

Project Management Series – Nehemiah (DEVOTION)


This series of devotions is designed to be completed over several days.

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Project Initiation & Planning

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 1-2
  • What steps did Nehemiah take to initiate and plan this project?
  • Who are the people in these roles: project manager, team, customer, sponsor, stakeholder?
  • What agreements does Nehemiah make with different groups or individuals?
  • What requests does he make from different groups or individuals?
  • What is the project scope?
  • What can we learn from how Nehemiah managed this project?

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Project Execution

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 3
  • Create a project plan for building the wall. For each task, identify:
    • Owner
    • Duration
    • Due Date (assume an overall project deadline of 4 months)
    • Cost/Budget
    • Who Pays?
    • Put the tasks in order and identify predecessors and successors (be creative with this, since it’s not clearly stated).
  • Identify the critical path by placing asterisks by critical path tasks.

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Risk Management

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 4-6
  • What unexpected events threated to take the project off plan?
  • Which threats were internal to the team, and which ones were external?
  • How did Nehemiah deal with them?
  • How could he have prepared for them in advance?
  • What can we learn from Nehemiah’s example?

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Risk Management

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 7:1-5, 70-73; 8:1-18; 9:1-3, 38; 10:28-39; 11:1-2; 12:44-47
  • What things did Nehemiah do that would help to ensure the sustainability (ability to be maintained) of the project?
  • How do you think these would help?
  • What promises did the people make?
  • What can we learn from these Scriptures?

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Project Close-Out

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 12:27-43
  • How did Nehemiah celebrate the completion of the project?
  • What can we learn from Nehemiah’s example?
  • Why do you think celebration and close-out might be important?

 

Devotion – Project Management Series (Nehemiah)

Monitoring & Evaluation

In your groups, read the following Scriptures. Then answer the questions below.

  • Nehemiah 13
  • What happened after Nehemiah returned to Babylon?
  • What promises from Chapter 10 did the people break?
  • What could Nehemiah have done to prevent these problems?
  • What is the importance of monitoring and evaluation for the success of a project?
  • How should it be done?

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Filed under Bible study, Challenges, Devotion, Evaluation, leadership, Management, Nehemiah, Overcoming obstacles, Planning, Priorities, Problem solving, Project management, Resources, Solutions

Radio Waves


Time

15-20 minutes

Description

This object lesson teaches about how both God and the devil are competing for our attention. It uses the metaphor of radio towers sending signals to a radio.

Materials

  • Old radio (doesn’t need to work)
  • Two wire hangers
  • Aluminum foil
  • Printouts from “Radio Waves Construction” slides (see “Lesson and Material Downloads” page.)
  • Tape

Preparation

· Make radio tower headpieces for two children. (Directions are in the “Radio Waves Construction” file on the “Lesson and Material Downloads” page.)

· Practice the script.

radio-waves-construction

Procedure

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

  • “Hey! I found this old radio at the house, and I thought I would see if it still works.” (Pretend to find a station while making a static sound effect.)
  • “Have you ever had this problem? You can’t find a clear station on the radio.” (Listen for responses.)
  • “It’s frustrating, right?”
  • “That reminds me of how we communicate with God.”
  • “A lot of people say that they have a difficult time hearing God speak to them. Do you ever have a hard time hearing God speak to you?” (Listen for responses.)
  • “I understand what you mean, because I have a hard time, too, sometimes.”
  • “Let’s explore what causes this.” (Ask for two volunteers to come up. Place one of the radio tower headpieces on each one of them. Then place them at either end of the stage or teaching area so that one is on your left, and one is on your right. Ask them to make hand motions toward you like they are sending you signals.)
  • “Let’s pretend that these two people are different radio station towers and that I’m a radio.”
  • “This one is W-I-A-M, which are the call letters for Yahweh Broadcasting. In other words, this is God.”
  • “This one is K-L-I-E, which are the call letters for Lucifer Radio. In other words, this is the devil.”
  • “Now, the way a regular radio works is that it picks up radio waves from a radio tower.”
  • “You can change which station the radio is listening to by turning the dial.” (Pretend to twist your nose and then lean toward the station you are “hearing” at that moment.)
  • “The different radio stations compete with each other to get your attention.”
  • “Our two radio stations are in competition with each other, too.” (Make sure that both your volunteers are still making hand motions toward you.)
  • “If the devil can get you to listen to his radio station, he knows you won’t be listening to God’s radio station.” (Twist your nose, and lean toward the KLIE radio tower.)
  • “Whenever you listen to the devil’s radio station, it tells you to do what you want to do – not what God is asking you to do.”
  • “In fact, if you listen to the devil’s station long enough, you start to move closer to it so that you can hear it more clearly.” (Move closer to the volunteer with the KLIE radio tower.)
  • “It begins to sound really good to you, and you want to listen to it more and more.” (Demonstrate that you are really enjoying what you are hearing from KLIE.)
  • “Notice that WIAM is still sending me signals, but I’m not tuned into God’s station, so I don’t hear them.”
  • “And even if I decide I should start listening to God’s station, it won’t come in clearly right away.” (Twist your nose and lean toward the WIAM radio tower. Make a static noise and look like you are having a hard time hearing the station.)
  • “The reason I’m having trouble hearing God’s station is because I’ve moved so far away from it and because there is a lot of sin in the way.” (Ask for four or five volunteers to come up, and position them between you and the WIAM radio tower.)
  • “These guys represent all the sin that has sprung up in my life. They get in the way of the signals that WIAM is sending me.”
  • “So, if you’re not hearing God talk to you, maybe it’s because you are listening to His competitor’s station.”
  • “Maybe it’s because you are too far away from His signal and have too much sin between the two of you.”
  • “Does anyone know how I can get rid of all this sin and get closer to WIAM?” (Listen for responses. Specifically, you want to hear that you need to repent (say you are sorry) and ask for forgiveness.)
  • “That doesn’t sound too tough. ‘God, I’m really sorry for listening to your competitor’s radio station. I want to listen to You again. Will you please forgive me?’” (After you’ve said this, have your WIAM volunteer push through all the volunteers representing your sin in order to get near to you. Dismiss these volunteers, and then follow the WIAM volunteer back over to his/her side of the stage. Demonstrate that you are enjoying listing to God’s station.)
  • “You know, the great part about listening to WIAM is that I don’t feel guilty after I tune in. I always feel guilty after listening to KLIE.”
  • “Now, how do I make sure that I stay tuned into God’s station?” (Listen for responses. You are listening for responses such as ‘read your Bible,’ ‘pray,’ ‘go to church’…)
  • “Exactly! Now, don’t be surprised if when you first start reading your Bible, you hear a lot of static at first.”
  • “The words might be difficult to understand, and even when you understand them, they just look like words.”
  • “That happens, but keep tuning in to God’s station every day, and something cool starts to happen…you start to fine-tune your ability to hear God in what you read, and the words start to jump to life for you!”
  • “You will start to enjoy tuning in each day, and then you will start moving closer and closer to his tower.” (Demonstrate moving closer to the tower.)
  • “Before long, you won’t be interested in picking up the devil’s station at all.”
  • “He can do his best to get your attention, but you won’t pay any attention to him.” (Have KLIE volunteer make desperate gestures to try to get your attention, but ignore him/her. Then thank your volunteers and dismiss them.)

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Filed under Bible study, Christianity, Focus, God's Will, Listening to God, Obedience, Object Lesson, prayer, Satan's tactics, spiritual disciplines