52 Card Pickup from Playing With a Full Deck
Type of Activity: Problem-Solving
Source: Playing With A Full Deck, by Michelle Cummings, also in Possiblesbag Teambuilding Kit Activity Manual, Chris Cavert, pg. 36.
Props Needed: playing cards, one per participant
Group Size: Best played with 12 or more players.
Playing the Game: This is a great large group activity. Set 4 chairs back to back in a square fashion so that each line protrudes out from the center like the spokes of a wheel. Designating which chair is for which suit is optional. One way to start it is to give each participant a card and tell them not to look at it. Tell them that whoever has the king in each suit is to sit in the chair. Then the queen on his/her lap, then the jack on the queen's lap, etc. You will eventually have one big lap sit! Once everyone has been given a card tell them to look at it and then line up in order by suit as quickly as possible. Be ready for loud and fast! Another way to start the activity is to give the instructions first and then fling the cards up in the air and let them scramble for a card and then line up.
Variation: Timing this activity is a good way to let groups see improvement. Establish a baseline time and challenge the group to get their “best” time by improving the process.
Another variation is to do this activity silently and without looking at their cards. After you pass out a card to each individual, ask them to place it to their forehead without looking at the card. Then without talking have them figure out which king sits in which chair and the chaos begins!
If the chairs described above are an issue, ask the group to create a square shape with each suit at one side.
Variation: In the middle of a circled group of players, spread the Cards out face down. The challenge is to see how fast the group can line up all the suits in order—Ace to King—ending up with a square of players. Ask the group to create a square shape with each suit at one side, each player holding up at least 2 cards. (If there are not enough hands you can let the players line the Cards up in a square on the floor.) Establish a baseline time and challenge the group to get their “best” time by improving the process.
Variation: Once the Cards are nice and broken in, you could provide a dramatic start to either variation described above by tossing the Cards into the air, letting them hit the ground before you say, “GO!”
- How successful do you think you were at this activity?
- Was there any confusion on where you were supposed to go?
- How did timing the activity make a difference in your performance?
Learning styles utilized from the 7 Kinds of Smart: ~picture smart, logic smart, body smart
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