Press Ten

Type of Activity: Problem-Solving

Group Size: 6 or more

Set Up: Break the deck of cards into suits (diamonds, clubs, spades, hearts) then discard the face cards (jack, queen, king) and set them into four separate piles.

Find an open space with some type of platform in which to spread the card out FACEDOWN, in four separate rows, in random order.  Approximately 15-20 feet from the platform create a “starting line”

  • “In a moment, but not yet, I am going to yell: On your mark, Get Set, GO!  When you here GO! Your task is as follows; you need to flip your set of cards over, IN ORDER, from ace to ten.  Here are the rules.”
  • Only one person can be across the starting line at any one time.
  • If more than one person is over the stating line at any time, you will have the following consequence…(disqualified, they lose a second, etc.)
  • Once the person crosses the starting line the team cannot communicate with them in any way.
  • That person must proceed to the cards and flip one card, and only one card, over without anyone seeing what card it is.   If it is the next card in your sequence, Ace to Ten, you may leave it face up, if it is not you must return it to the face down position and return to the group.
  • You may not rearrange the order of the cards on the platform.
  • Every person in the group must flip over a card.
  • The first team to get all of their cards flipped over in sequence wins.  Ready, Go!
  • As soon as the game ends, have your co instructors remix the cards and place them face down for another round (turnaround time is critical).
  • As soon as they are complete, have the participants count off by fours.  Direct that all of the ones are now spades (and direct them to the spade area) all of the twos are hearts, etc…
  • As soon as they reach their new groups yell, On Your mark, get set, go!  Do your best not to give them anytime to discuss plans.
  • As soon as this round is over, go through steps 5 and 6, but this time give them five minutes to come up with a plan amongst themselves.
  • After the five minutes of planning, yell on your mark get set, GO!
  • At the conclusion of this round have everyone circle up for a debrief.

 Debriefing  Topics:

  • Was this challenging, Why?
  • Did any of the teams continue to pick up the same card over and over, Why?
  • During the second round, How many people deferred to the members of the “winning team” for the second round plan? Why?
  • How many people here felt that because they came from a “losing team” they weren't as confident in their input during the second round? Why?
  • Does Winning or losing momentum effect a team’s ability to brainstorm or problem solve?
  • What was the difference in being able to plan in round three versus no planning in round two?
  • Was it difficult to move from team to team, working with your previous competitors?
  • Did you feel the same way about your first team as you did you’re second or third?  Why?
  • Was the role that you played in each team the same or different?
  • In this context was what was the benefit of competition.
  • How much did attitude play in to your success or failure?
  • How many people here are members of several different teams just in the context of their work?  Are some better than others? Why?

For original write up purchase "Playing with a Full Deck.”  

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