Connect with your children and adolescents through these interactive games that vary from physical activity to storytelling to verbal games. Most of these games can be played outdoors and don't require any supplies.
1. Freeze Dance
Play music or someone can sing a song and everyone dances. When the music stops, everyone must freeze. Last person still dancing becomes the judge the next round.
2. Animal Dance
Same as above but when the music stops, call out a name of an animal, and everyone has to become that animal.
Mirror each other's expressions, movements, sounds. One person can start as the leader and then switch. Try it with no leaders!
4. Zip Zap Zop
Children have to jump and clap while saying “ZIP”, then point to somebody else in the circle. The person they point to has to jump and clap and point and say “ZAP”. The person they point to does the same thing except says “ZOP”. The pattern continues until either a person says the wrong word or messes up the rhythm (doesn’t go or hesitates longer than a few seconds).
5. Who is the Leader?
Make a series of movements with your body. Continue each movement for a few seconds, so that adolescents/children have a chance to watch and follow. Examples of movements include: Wave both hands over your head, reach down to touch your toes, stand on one foot with your toe pointing toward the circle. Choose a volunteer and ask them to leave the activity space for a moment, or to turn around and cover their eyes. Choose another adolescent/child to be the new “coach.” The adolescents/children in the circle should begin to follow the new coach’s movements. As they continue, ask the volunteer to come back to the circle. The volunteer should try to guess who the coach is, guessing as many times as they need to find the right person.
6. Memorize My Moves!
One person will begin the game by showing everyone a quick dance move or movement, for example, stomping feet, jumping in the air, or spinning in a circle. The person to their right must copy the dance move, then create their own. The third person must copy both dance moves and create their own, and so on, until everyone has had a turn. Adolescents/children should try to get around the whole circle without any mistakes. The last person will have the most dance moves to memorize.
7. Group Statues
At the start of the game you will ask the adolescents/children to move around the room, loosely swinging their arms and gently relaxing their heads and necks. After 10-15 seconds you will call out a word. The group must form themselves into statues that describe the word. For example, you shout “happy”. All adolescents/children have to instantly freeze without talking, and pose in a way that shows what “happy” means to them. Repeat the exercise several times. Other words to use include: fun, dizzy, excited, tired.
8. Dancing on Paper
Begin the activity by dividing adolescents/children into groups of two. Each pair should stand on one piece of paper. Explain that in the activity, adolescents need to dance on the piece of paper. If either member of the pair touches the ground beyond the edge of the newspaper with any part of his or her body while dancing, the pair is disqualified from the game. Begin to play music. Use any type of device that is available, such as a mobile phone or radio or clap your hands, or the entire group can sing a song together. Stop the music after approximately 30-45 seconds. Explain to adolescents/children that they should fold their piece of paper in half. (They may step off of the newspaper to do so). Then they should stand on the paper again. Begin to play music again, and ask adolescents/children to begin dancing again in pairs. After approximately 30 seconds, stop the music. Ask adolescents to fold the paper in half again and then continue with the music and dancing.
1. Tell your children a story from your own childhood
2. Tell Stories
Make up a new story together. Say: ”We are going to create a story, one sentence at a time. Each of us will add one sentence to the story.” Explain: At the end of one person’s sentence, he or she should say, “SUDDENLY….” Then the person next to them will continue with a new sentence, ending by saying “SUDDENLY…” You can say, for example, ”I was walking to get water when SUDDENLY...."" then the person next to me finishes that sentence, for example, they might say ""… A large animal jumped out of the bushes and SUDDENLY..."" Continue around the circle until everyone has added a sentence.
1. Three Truths and a Lie
Adolescents write their name, along with four pieces of information about themselves on a large sheet of paper. Say: “on the piece of paper you must write three things that are true about yourself and one thing that is false. For example, ‘Alfonse likes singing, loves football, speaks 10 languages and loves to dance’. Which one is false?” Adolescents then go around the space with their sheets of paper. They meet in pairs, show their paper to each other, and try to guess which of the four pieces of information is false.
2. Guess Who I Am
Ask adolescents to sit comfortably somewhere in the space. Each adolescent should have a piece of paper and something to write with. Each adolescent should write the name of a famous person on their piece of paper. You say: “Try to think of someone who is famous for something positive. Don’t tell anyone else the name of the famous person, and when you see someone else’s paper, don’t say the name out loud!” You will collect the pieces of paper, while the adolescents stand in a line. You will then tape a piece of paper to each adolescent's back. The adolescents will not see the name taped to their back. Their task is to find out who they are. They need to go around the room and ask only yes or no questions about their identity. If they get a “yes” answer, they can continue to ask that same person questions until they get a “no” answer. Then they must move on to ask questions to someone else. When an adolescent thinks they have figured out who they are, they take the paper off their back, put it on the front of their shirt, and write their own name on it. That person can then help others find out who they are.