GAMES TO TEACH VALUES
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Sometimes you would like to introduce or reinforce a value. Why not do it in a game setting? These are games that have been contributed by Guiders and Scouters. Many of them have come from the Guiding/Scouting List and the WAGGGS-L list. If you have a game you would like to add to this page please submit it to me by e-mail.
|Diversity Brings Us Together
|Cross-Cultural Experience Fantasy
|Red Light Green Light
|Banana Goes To Camp
|Josephine With A Difference
|Beliefs and Values Game
|Roles and Labels
CROSS-CULTURAL EXPERIENCE FANTASY
Your family has decided that they can no longer live in Canada. There are no jobs and the prospect of finding jobs in very slim. Your family has discussed where to move to and because one of your neighbours moved to India last year and was able to find a job the decision has been made to move your family to India. They have chosen you to go ahead, find a job and someplace for them to stay and they will follow you in about 6 months. The day has arrived for you to leave and you have said your good-byes to your family and friends and are now seated on the airplane waiting for take off. The person sitting beside you says: "Is this your first trip to India? You reply, "Yes" and the person says " what do you know about India?"
1. Write three things you say:
You have a very smooth flight to India, when you arrive at Customs, you hand your passport to the Customers Officer, he shakes his head, says something you do not understands, points over to another Officer and you have to haul all your stuff over there you do not understand anything they are saying to you.
2. What do you feel?
They finally appear to be satisfied with your passport and you are allowed out into the people filled airport. You look all around and cannot see anyone that even looks vaguely familiar. The family who moved here last year are suppose to be here to pick you up. You cannot find them.
3. What do you feel?
You have waited two hours and you no idea what you should do. You just sit and wait. You look around you at the people in their strange clothes, with their strange language that you cannot understand.
4. What do you feel as you look and listen?
People seem to be looking at you strangely and you begin to worry about what to do if these people do not come soon. As the people look at you...
5. What do you think they are thinking?
The family you have been waiting for finally arrive, full of explanations as to why they are late. They take you to their home, which is only a very small apartment and tell you that you are welcome to say there for a few days until you can find a job and a place to live.
6. What do you feel?
7. What do you want them to say?
They tell you that they know of a place that is hiring and that they will take you there the next day to see if you can get a job.
8. What kind of job do you expect to get?
The company says yes they will hire you and that you can start the next day. It is a shoe factory and you will be cutting out the leather for the tops of the shoes. You are to stand at a machine which has very sharp blades and if you do not move the blade very accurately you ruin the leather and the shoe cannot be made and you could possibly cut yourself very severely. You are not sure that you understand exactly what to do as the person who explained your job did not speak English very well and was very hard to understand. You worked in an office back home and have never had to stand all day to work.
9. Briefly list your impressions of your first day:
The other people in the factory are not very friendly and because you cannot speak their language you are finding it difficult to make any friends.
10. List your efforts:
You have been looking for a place to live, because there is not enough room for you at your friends. You have two choices. You can move in with a family who are from Canada or you can move in with an Indian family.
11. Which do you choose and why?
You are taking language classes at night and trying very hard to learn to speak their language but there are so many dialects that you find you cannot understand anything. You try very hard but feel you will never learn the new language. You get to work one morning and they tell you that they have made a rule that says you must speak their language and that you can no longer speak English at work.
12.a. What is your first thought?
12.b. When would you find yourself breaking the rule?
Christmas is fast approaching, Your family will not be with you for Christmas but the family you live with is very friendly and will help you get through Christmas.
13. List two other times when you would feel homesick?
Ahead of time, leader/adult places items on the hiking path that DO NOT belong to nature. Items such as a small sponge, bottle of glue, coat hanger, plastic soda bottle, etc. ... that not only Do Not belong but are considered liter. Girls/Patrols then have one person with a piece of paper & pencil to keep track of the items. They then begin their hike searching for these items and keeping track of them again with a set time limit. You could also give them a rough idea as to how many items their searching for such as "There are at least 30 items that do not belong". Kids love this game!!
HINT: Challenge the girls a little by placing items that would make them "think" about what is part of nature and what isn't!!!
This is a complicated game but very worthwhile for teaching the girls the basics of ecology and the food chain. In the introduction to the game, you should talk about the relationship between herbivorous (plant-eating), omnivorous (everything-eating) and carnivorous (meat-eating) animals. You should also talk about some possible strategies that the three different types of animals use to survive in nature. More will become clear as I describe the basic set-up below.
(These instructions are for a game with 50 players... if you have a different number of players try to keep the ratios of the different types of animals the same.)
The Setup: The life rings basically show each player how many lives they have left. Herbivores get 10 lives each, omnivores 5 lives, and carnivores 2. What we found worked best for the life rings were to take colored pieces of bristol board, punch a hole in them, and thread them on to a pipe cleaner. Herbivores got 10 green cards, omnivores got 5 brown cards, and carnivores got 2 red cards. If you wish to use this game a number of times, I recommend waterproofing the cards with Mac-Tac. This also makes them more durable. On each life-ring there should also be attached one white file card.
The food and water stations are easily made out of a bright piece of construction paper or bristol board, with the word "food" or "water" written on them. Attached to the station sign is a crayon on a string. Make sure that each station has a different color crayon attached. When the players visit the food and water stations, they mark their file card with the crayon to prove they found it.
The play area should be as large as possible. Scatter the food and water stations throughout the play area, and try to make at least two of them very difficult to find. Use the face paint to mark each player and identify them as either herbivore (green paint), omnivore (brown paint) or carnivore (red paint).
The Rules: This is a survival game. Therefore, the only way to "win" is to still be alive at the end of the game. Each type of animal (herbivore, omnivore and carnivore) has different needs which must be met in order to survive. Send the Herbivores out into the play area first, and give them at least a 10-minute head start on the others. The herbivores must find all the food and water stations in order to survive. Next, send out the omnivores. They must find all the water stations and at least two food stations. They must also catch at least four herbivores in order to survive. Herbivores are caught by being tagged, at which point the omnivore (or carnivore) takes one card from their life-ring. Carnivores are sent out next. They must find all the water stations and must catch at least ten other animals (can be either herbivores or omnivores).
At this point you should have 5 players left, unmarked. Send four of them out as Fire, Flood, Famine and Cold. These girls can tag any animal and take one life-card at a time. Their goal is to kill as many animals as possible. The last girl is given the water gun. She is Man. Man can hunt any animal and doesn't have to tag them to catch them: if she can hit them with water from the gun the animal is considered caught and must give Man as many life-cards as Man requests. Man can take all of the life-cards of any animal she catches except for the very last one. When an animal runs out of lives, she is out of the game and should return to the start point.
Let the game run for at least an hour, and longer if possible. At the end, call all the girls back with the whistle. You shouldalso have a group discussion about the different strategies used by the players to survive. It is always interesting to find out what strategies the survivors of the game used, and to try and apply them to real life. For example: one time I ran the game we had a Carnivore whose strategy was to hide by one of the water stations, wait for other animals to come by, and ambush them. Lions, crocodiles and other top predators often use this strategy in nature! Neato!
Variations: You can also have one player circulate as Rabies or Disease. This girl should be equipped with a number of yellow bristol board cards. When she tags a player, she takes one of their life cards and replaces it with a yellow card. When the infected player tags another animal, she can take two life-cards, and passes on her rabies card. Conversely, if the infected player is tagged by another animal, she can take one of her attacker's life-cards and passes on the rabies card. When the game is over, include in your discussion the effects of diseases on animals.
If you want to make the game really complicated, name all your animals! For example: in the Herbivores you can have Deer, Rabbit, Squirrel, etc., in the Omnivores you can have Raccoon, Skunk, Bear, etc., and in Carnivores you can use Wolf, Owl, etc. As part of the survival game the players must find the mate of their species and trade some sort of "reproduction card". In your discussion afterwards, talk about the risks and dangers animals must face in the wild as they try to find a mate and reproduce.
We used index cards with different foods on it. The girls were lined up single file, and they count off, until they reach 5 and start over, until everyone had a number.
The food was sprinkled over the ground. Each number was told what it was allowed to eat.
After the food is on the ground, the numbers are called out randomly for the girls to go and find their food. (I think we limited everyone to 3 cards each). Once they had their food cards they were to sit down. We also changed the numbers around so that everyone had the chance of being the "picky" eater or an animal who ate everything. The point of the game was to show one of the ways animals become extinct. Picky eaters (the ones) were limited by what they could eat. (Another point - don't be a picky eater).
Have all participants stand in a large circle -- at least arms'
length apart. In turn around the circle, each person must tell
one thing about themselves or their experiences which they think
is unique. If no one else in the group shares the experience/
characteristic, the speaker takes one step forward; if someone else HAS had the same experience, the speaker remains where he/she is. Go around the circle several times until most people are close to the middle of the circle.
The pluralism value in the exercise is in the processing at the end. Many people come up with what they think -- and most of us would think -- were unique experiences, only to find that someone else has that in common with them. It shows not only how different we all are, and how our differences can enrich the group, but also that we have many things in common that we might not expect.
Four people are chosen from the group. The group requires at
least 16 people. Each of these 4 leaders is given a characteristic that will allow someone to join her group. (This is done in private) Something quite obvious i.e. glasses, jeans, tennis shoes, color of hair, etc. Each leader goes to a corner. The remaining participants IN SILENCE, walk and pass each of the leaders extending their hands, as if to shake, each of the leaders shakes her head yes or no, as to whether or not they get to join her group. When you join the group you stand behind the leader so that she may see the person that is coming next in line. Hopefully, a few of the people will not be chosen. You let these people pass all 4 leaders at least once, so they are rejected by one or two of the leaders twice. You then call an end to the game. You then ask the leaders how they felt about having to reject people, how people felt about be accepted, and how those not chosen felt about not being chosen. Then ask each group if they can figure out why they were accepted to the group. (You have not told the group that it is a physical characteristic) Sometimes they can figure it out and sometimes not.
This is a game that can be used at the girl level also. And sometimes this is the first time some of these girls are rejected and have never had that feeling before. It is a game that can get people talking and does get them up and moving around the room.
BANANA GOES TO CAMP
Story: (here follows *my* camp version of the story; you may have to modify it to use it in *your* circumstances)
I brought my friend Banana Scout with me to our campfire today. Doesn't he look nice? I really enjoy Banana Scout's company. Did you know he went to scout camp this year? Yes, but he didn't enjoy himself a lot. All the scouts at camp made fun of him. They said nasty, hurtful things to him. Can you imagine what they might have said? (ask for suggestions of what was said)e.g. You have too many freckles!.....You're not a nice yellow color like me!.....You're too small!
Well, I can tell you that this did not make Banana scout very happy. Look at his face...doesn't he have a nice smile? He didn't let any of the scouts know that they were hurting him. Did you know words could hurt? Has anyone ever hurt you with words? Banana Scout just kept smiling and tried not to feel hurt but inside...well, he wants us to know how he felt inside. (begin to peel the banana)
Sometimes when we say things that are not nice the people we say them to look just the same as they did before but inside they begin to feel like Banana Scout did...can you see what the mean words did to Banana Scout? (by the time you are half finished peeling, the banana will fall apart into many slices...help the children to reflect on what hurtful words can do and what we can do to prevent our friends/fellow campers from feeling hurt inside.)
Hope you enjoy this little story. It was very helpful in this situation as we had a girl who was "differently-abled" and many of the girls were snubbing her or even being mean to her. It made me very angry to see this and thus, the story at campfire time. The day after campfire we noticed several of the girls helping out and being nice to her!! Sometimes we just need little reminders to help us *know* the feelings of others.
- GREEN LIGHT
Craft: You can have the Sparks/Brownies make their own signs by drawing a circle on red and green construction paper or you can make up a set to be used for future meeting and keep to be used for various topics (NOTE) my sample is a 5 inch circle with a handle like the stop signs that the crossing guards use, make out of red and green bristol board.
To Play: Distribute a red circle and a green circle to each Spark/Brownie Then, ask the girls questions. If the question is right or the girls feel they should say yes, they put up the Green circle. If the answer is no, or it is something they shouldn't do, they raise the Red Circle. Can be used for different topics.
Sample Questions: ROAD SAFETY QUESTIONS
|1. When you walk to the corner you cross the street without stopping.
|2. Stop, Look & Listen when you come to the corner.
|3. Look both ways before you cross the street.
|4. When your ball rolls out into the street you run after it.
|5. Cross the street only at the corner.
|6. Always walk beside your mother when you are in the grocery store parking lot. Do not run ahead of her.
|7. When you want to cross the street you don't have to walk to the corner to cross.
|8. You can cross the street anywhere you want.
|9. Only cross when the light is green or you see the walk sign.
|10. Run ahead of your mom when you are in the Mall parking lot.
|11. When the sign says "DON'T WALK" you go anyway.
|12. Stop at the corner and look both ways before you cross the street.
|13. Always talk to someone you do not know when they speak to you.
|14. Stop, Look and Run when you come to the corner.
|15. Never talk to strangers.
|16. Pet a strange animal.
|17. Do not run out between two parked cars.
|18. Keep your toys in the driveway.
|19. Playing games in the road is very dangerous.
|20. Run into the street after your cat.
|21. If someone frightens you, go immediately to a Block Parent house.
Could I challenge you to come up with some other topics that you could use this same game for such as First Aid, Home Safety, My Body, etc.
Equipment: One sheet of paper and a pen
Number of Participants: 24 and up!
Age: 7-16 years
Source: 30th Guide Company, Calgary - from Guider Jennifer
You divide the girls into two equal teams, and line them up facing each other about 25 feet apart. (I'm making an estimate in the distance, if this is too close together you'll know.)
One team are the deer, and the other team is the food, water, or shelter.
Each round the deer must decide whether they are hungry, thirsty or cold. If the deer are hungry they hold their stomachs, if they are thirsty they cup their hands and if they need shelter they hold their hands together over their heads (tented).
The other team of girls decides whether they are food, water or shelter and they make the same symbols. The deer turn back to the other girls, and on the count of three they turn around with their symbol showing and the food, water or shelter is making their symbol too (they decide as well what they'd like to be.)
The deer then run across the space and catch their food, water or shelter. Only one deer per person. If there are more deer that need water than there are ponds, then the deer die and stay on the side of the necessities. The deer that get what they need, reproduce and take their new deer with them back to the deer's team. After each round the number of deer is counted, and recorded.
Play the game about 10 times, so that the girls can see how the subsequent generations of deer are dependent on the numbers of the previous generation.
The Guides that I played this with were quite impressed with how the numbers went way up and then way down!
Everyone in the other half gets a sign (which I made from construction paper and with a yarn "necklace" to place it over the head.) No-one is able to read their own sign so they don't know what it says. Make up signs like "Tell me I look tired", "Ignore me", "Tell me I look great", "Call me stupid", "Treat me like your best friend" etc.
There should be a variety of positive and negative signs. ONLY the group with pencil and paper can initiate a conversation. The group with signs must wait for someone to talk to them.
It helps if they can slip the comment into the conversation. (i.e. A friend of mine was wearing the "Call me stupid" sign at the Multicultural workshop. Someone came up to her and asked her where she was from. When she said, Cardigan, they replied, "I hear there are a lot of stupid people living in Cardigan"!)
I have to admit, if I KNEW there was someone with shaky self esteem or very shy, I would tend to "plant" them with a positive sign. So I might ask someone who knew the group well, if I didn't.
After the group "interacts" it is important to debrief what happened, talking about how people treated them, how it made them feel, how they felt if they had a negative sign and why, who had the advantages and why.
It is also important with an exercise like this that everyone know the game ends when the game is over, and should not be used to joke over a weekend, etc.
I used the exercise in a discussion of stereotypes. We all have invisible signs which we wear and which affect the way people treat us. We need to examine our reactions to the way we are treated because they can also add to the way we are treated in future.
Take Josephine to the next meeting and sit her in a chair. Once the meeting begins, introduce \ "Josephine" to all the girls - and say something nice about "Jo" and something - not bad, but not so nice about "Jo". The introduction could go something like this, "girls, I want you to meet my friend Josephine. We really have a lot of fun together, except that sometimes she has REALLY bad breath. When you say this, rip off a piece of Jo - and don't make it a tiny piece. Then invite the rest of the girls to make negative comments about Jo. They can be about her hair, her appearance, her clothing or about her personality - it doesn't matter. Each girl as they make the negative comment (try to make sure they don't get too negative/nasty, they rip off a piece of "JO".
Once everyone has finished with their remarks- you can invite them to do several - you go on to the next part of the plan. You say, "okay girls, now that we've ripped Josephine apart - lets see if we can put "Josie" back together again." You need to point out to them that "Josie" will never be the same - that she now has scars that could last her a lifetime.
It really gives a powerful message to all who participate in it. It will show the girls how destructive their behavior can be. And, it should also create a bond, (team building) amongst the girls. They should be able to see ( YOU MAY HAVE TO FACILITATE A DISCUSSION ABOUT IT) how their power - although in this case a negative power - can be pulled together, and that when channeled in a positive direction, they can accomplish anything.
I found this works in all age groups, I know of one group who put Josephine back together so we had to get across the fact that scars don't always show on the outside.
JOSEPHINE WITH A DIFFERENCE
BELIEFS AND VALUES GAME
Game is best done with small group, 6-10 girls, Pathfinder age and up (a good thought provoker for adults). Give every girl a balloon and tell her to blow it up and tie it off. Then give out 10 small post-it notes each and ask them to write on each one, a value or belief that they have, either personal, family, country or worldly item. They may need a few minutes to think about this. They stick the post-its all over their balloons. They hold on to their balloon while a leader reads the following:
You are on a Hot Air Balloon Ride. Each value or belief is like a weight on the balloon weighing 2 Kilograms each. While on this trip, the radio advises you that high winds are ahead of you and you must rise up to fly over them by releasing one weight from your basket. The view from the higher altitude is breathtaking, but short lived. You release your helium slowly to lower you to a better height and you release one weight in error. You are now over a large body of water and you see very black clouds coming towards you. Quickly, release two weights now! You realize that you are in the centre of a storm! Severe rains are in view. You must make a decision as to how many more weights to drop. You decide three as this will allow you to hover above the troubled atmosphere. Release your three now. As all balloonists know, when running out of fuel, you must keep your height. Because you still need to travel to meet the opposite side of the body of water, you drop two more weights. You have traveled the globe and have survived the journey without harm.
You realize how hard it was for you to make decisions that needed quick responses or thoughtful consideration. You can see that you have one remaining weight with you on board. Was this particular weight chosen or did it remain by an undecided means. Only you know that answer.
Can we look at some of the weights that were dropped off. You might notice some that are familiar to you and others that you did not think about at all. How important is the last weight to you at this point after analyzing the choices you made. Have you broadened your viewpoint on your life’s choices. Discussion time. The girls might be rather reluctant at first to contribute to the above questions, but with a little discussion, usually open up and start to think about beliefs and values.
ROLES AND LABELS
Directions: Give each person a role to "wear" on their head. Ask them not to look at it, but put it on directly. Tell the group that their task is to build a "tower" using the materials given (paper, tape, etc.) Ask them to treat people according to their labels. Designate at least two observers, who will not participate in the task. Have them begin the role-play, let it go on as long as they need to bring out some of the roles. Stop the role-play.
Facilitate a discussion with the following questions:
Potential labels to work with: "ignore me", " act surprised", "laugh at everything I say", " none of my ideas are good", "hang on my every word", "I confuse you", "tell me to shut up", " treat me like a kid", etc.
Directions: Give each person a note card and ask them to keep it to themselves. Have them think of ways they could play out their role in a group situation. Give the group a task, such as building something or brainstorming an idea for an activity. Allow the roles to play out. Stop the role-play.
Facilitate a discussion with the following questions:
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