This collection was requested by variously compulsive participants in my variously impulsive retreats.
a.k.a. ABBlackSheepLittle Star – a singing game that borders on impossibility
One player is the clay. The other, the Cranker. The Cranker places an imaginary crank on any part of the Clay’s body that can move. The Clay then moves accordingly (if it’s not the desired direction, the Cranker merely reverses the Crank).
Elephant, Giraffe, Toaster, and more
Inner Eye Movie a game of collective imagining
Assume the Ha-Ha position as illustrated above. Tell a story adding one sentence, phrase or word at a time.
Handland – puppet theater of the air
A game from the Philippines.
The group forms a circle or a line. The facilitator [whoever wants to start the game] teaches everyone the simple chant “Sagidi sagidi sapopo.” Every time the group chants “Sagidi sagidi sapopo,” the facilitator makes a different action, such as clicking fingers or clapping, to the rhythm of the chant. With each new repetition of the chant, each person copies the actions of the person to their left so that everyone is always one move behind the person to their left.
Here‘s a video.
Two people go out (It could be one person, but when two people go out, it’s more fun for them. No one is on the spot.) In the meanwhile, everyone else is deciding on a “fun” adverb – one they could all act out, and have fun with. Slowly is a good one. Nervously even better.
When ready, the guessers are invited back in. They instruct any individual or group of individuals to do things in the manner of the adverb (hence, the name of the game). For example: John, comb your hair in the manner of the adverb. Or, Tara, dance with Tim in the manner of the adverb. Or even, Frank, brush your teeth in the opposite manner of the adverb.
I like to let people make as many guesses as they want. I even encourage the guessees, when things look bad for the guessers, to offer their own clues.
Players stand back to back, link arms, and try to sit down, and then stand up again. Then join partners, link arms, and do it in fours. Once they’ve succeeded, they look for another four players, etc., etc., until more or less everyone is standing up together.
People to People – kinda like Twister, but more fun, even
Two groups. One decides on a famous quotation or book or song or play or movie title, like “All’s Well that Ends Well.” (OK, I admit this is advanced. It could also be “My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean.”). They break the quote up into syllables, and assign each player a syllable. Then, they sing a song, all singing their syllables at the same time, while the other group tries to guess the quote.
Everyone is sitting in a circle. To start the game, one player says any other player’s name. That player then says any other player’s name (any name, as long as there is really someone there with that name, and it’s not your own name). Etc., etc., until it gets just a little boring, almost. Then add a rule – like, you have to answer in three seconds or two or half. Then, if anyone misses, everyone makes a sound (they can applaud or make compassionate noises – like “awww”). Then that person starts the next round.
Players stand facing each other in a circle. Each player has one hand palm up, and the other palm down. Palm-down hands are placed on top of the adjacent palm-up hands. This may take some time to figure out. Do the best you can. Palm-up hands try to hit palm-down hands before the palm-down hands are pulled away. If the palm-up hand misses, it becomes a palm-down hand; whilst the opponent’s heretofore palm-down hand becomes palm-up. Attempting to follow these rules leads to a certain amount of mayhem. Which, of course, is the whole point.
The Sound and the Fury – a movement, noise-making game for everybody
Players stand in pairs or triplets. One player starts by pointing to her, for example, elbow, and saying “this is my nose.” The next player points to his nose and says “this is my elbow” and then points, for further example, to his head and says “this is my foot.” The next then points to her foot and says “this is my head,” and then points, perhaps, to her knee and says “this is my eyebrow.” And on and again on.
Twiddle each other’s thumbs.
Try Twoddlng in a circle, or with three or more.
A playful path is the shortest road to happiness.
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