Invisible Maze

Type of Activity: Problem-Solving

Props Needed: One Tarp, Maze Cards, Bike Horn

Set Up: Lay out the tarp on the ground and decide which end of the tarp you want the group to start at.  Have the group all start/stand at that end.  You, the facilitator, pick out a maze card with the stepping sequence you would like them to figure out.

Process: Explain to the group that there is an exact sequence they need to figure out in this maze.  Each member of the group must figure out the path and pass through the maze by stepping out the sequence correctly.  This should be done with the least amount of errors possible.  They must figure out the way through trial and error.  Using the bike horn, the facilitator buzzes the participant that steps in an incorrect square and they must step out of the maze go to the end of the line.  Explain that only one participant may be on the tarp at a time.  Also explain to them that once they have figured out a correct square, the next square in the sequence will be one of the squares touching the square they are standing in.  Marking the correct path with coins, blades of grass, rocks, or whatever else is in the vicinity is not allowed.  The maze is broken when everyone in the group has passed through the stepping sequence correctly.

Variation: Use the bike horn to ‘honk’ when they have stepped in a correct square rather than an incorrect square.  This is more of a positive reinforcement rather than signaling when an error has been made. To add difficulty to this one, you can set it up at the beginning that no one can use their voice. Also try having the participants on the tarp be blindfolded so their group much guide them.

Debriefing Topics:

  • Was it easier to be on the outside of the maze as an aide or easier to walk the maze?
  • How much help did you rely on from your group?
  • How was the group able to accomplish this task?
  • How was this activity like every day life?
  • Is it easier to see a problem (or the solutions to the problem) from the outside looking in or when you are in the middle of it?
  • What might the maze cards represent to you?

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