Thursday, April 28, 2011

Team Building Activity

The staff at Learning on the Log are infamous for making a great team-building game out of nothing.  Here is an example of how:

Find a log in the woods, and provide some rope...

Ask the group to use all the rope, everyone must participate, and carry the log from point A to point B.  In this case the group was asked to carry the log up a steep stair way...

Have a follow up discussion after the activity is completed.  This is the most rewarding and fruitful part of the whole team-building game.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Noodle Tag

Here is a new version of playing the Tag.

You Need:
  • People (4 or more for optimal fun)
  • Noodles (cut in half)
  • Good attitude

  1. One noodle per person
  2. Every person for themselves
  3. Can only hit below the waist
  4. 5 push ups in order to come re-join the game

Friday, April 15, 2011

DIR®/Floortime perpective

I was reading through Dr. Greenspan and Dr. Wieder's book "The child with Special needs".  At the beginning of chapter 10 (page 160) was an interesting scenario I wanted to highlight and reflect on.  There are so many times we, as playing partners, can become frustrated with the play or interaction.  Here is what Dr. Greenspan and Dr. Wieder described and then suggested.

Three-year-old Sam sat on the floor playing with a car.  Paul, his father, tried to join in.  "That's a nice car," Paul said.  "Look how fast you're moving it.  Look at it go.  Oh, now you're moving it slowly.  Now it's going to the right.  Now it's going to the left."  Since Sam was patently ignoring his father's running commentary, Paul tried to be more interactive.  He switched to questions.  "Can you move the car here?" he asked, cupping his hands into a a garage.  Sam continued to ignore him.  "Look here's a tunnel," Paul said making a tunnel with his hands.  "Can you drive the car through the tunnel?"  Again, Sam ignored him.  Paul decided to be commanding.  "Bring the car here," he ordered.  Sam didn't.  Finally, frustrated, Paul grabbed the car from his son and hid it behind his back.  Sam, predictably, threw a tantrum; then he sulked and refused to touch the car again.

Why did this encounter fail?  Paul was trying to interact above his son's developmental level.  Because of receptive and expressive language delays, Sam couldn't understand or respond to his father's words (although he heard them) or sophisticated gestures.  His father's sudden frustrated move to grab the car frightened Sam into a tantrum.  Had Paul found a way to interact with Sam through very simple gestures, the scene could have  gone quite differently.

With coaching, here is what happened next...

When Sam began rolling the car back and forth again, Paul got a second car and rolled it towards his son's.  Sam saw it coming and pulled his car out of the way, closing a circle of communication.  Next, Paul turned and chased Sam's car.  But this time Sam didn't pull his car away; he held it tight and let Paul crash it.  Another circle closed.  Over the next few minutes the game escalated as father and son chased each other with the cars, going first fast then slow, sometimes crashing and sometimes not.  At the end of the game, Paul again cupped his hands in front of Sam's car - this time not as a garage, but as a barrier.  With no hesitation Sam drove his car around his father's hands, understanding and responding to this more complex gesture.  The game had become a full-fledge, nonverbal dialogue.  

Feel free to share your opinion after reading these paragraphs.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Minute to Win It

These deceptively difficult games need to be completed in 60-seconds with ordinary household objects.  As each challenge is completed, the difficulty level increases. Each time we play we offers new twists and turns.  

Some examples of the challenges we have presented our guys: 

Below are some examples of games we could play in the future.  Find out more @
Stack 7 Ding Dongs on the forehead.
Use swim flippers to pick up a tortilla from the floor and flip it up onto a plate balanced on the head.
With one hand holding an upside down pizza tray, contestant rolls an egg onto it to collect four small upside-down stickers.
Wearing a baseball cap, contestant picks up a toothbrush from a toothbrush holder by hooking the bristles on the cap's brim, and then transports it to another toothbrush holder.
SPARE MEPut marbles into one end of a pool noodle, then roll them out the other end to knock over three standing sticks of sidewalk chalk.
Contestant alternately stacks 4 paper towel rolls and 4 eggs into one freestanding tower.
Stack 5 empty cans on a plastic plate floating in a large bowl of water.