Leadership Inspirations Activities

Spoons

A card game where players compete for spoons

Duration

10-20 minutes

Team Stage

Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing

Type Of Activity

Energizer, Game

Materials

Deck Of Playing Cards, Spoons

 

SUMMARY

A frantic card game in which players try to be the first to get 4 of a kind. Once one player gets 4 of a kind, everyone quickly tries to grab a spoon from the center!

 

SET UP

  • Split into groups of 6 to 12 people and form a circle.
  • The deck should have only 4 of a kind for the number of people you have (e.g. if you have 6 players, you need four Aces, four 2’s, four 3’s, four 4’s, four 5’s, and four 6’s). Make sure to shuffle the cards.
  • Place the spoons in the center of the circle so that all participants can easily reach them. You will need enough spoons for everyone in the group minus one.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • For each round, shuffle the deck of cards and deal four cards to each player.
  • The goal of the game is to be the first to get four cards of the same rank.
  • If an opposing player beats you to it, avoid being the last one to realize it.
  • When you begin the round, all players simultaneously choose one card in their hand, pass that card to an opponent seated on their left, and pick up the new card they’ve received from the opponent on their right.
  • You may never have more than four cards in your hand; therefore, you may not add a fifth card to your hand before passing one card of your choice to the person seated on your left.
  • Once a player successfully gets four of a kind, he or she as secretly as they can, takes a spoon from the center and quietly places it in front of themselves.
  • As soon as any player takes a spoon, all other players must quickly do the same thing.
  • The person who does not successfully obtain a spoon loses that round.
  • Those players who have already successfully taken a spoon can try to trick the other players by pretending the game is still going on. In other words, players can continue to pick up and pass cards, making it harder for others to realize what has happened.

VARIATIONS

  • If you don’t want to use spoons, try one of these fun variations:
    • Tongue Game: When you get 4 of a kind silently stick out your tongue and hold it there.
    • Pig Game: When you get 4 f a kind quietly place a finger on the tip of your nose (like a pig!).
    • You can also check out Kemps

SAMPLE DEBRIEFING QUESTIONS

What?
  • What was the goal of this activity?
  • Did your group do well? What could have improved?
  • How did your group make decisions? Was it effective or ineffective?
  • How did your group manage conflict that arose?
So What?

Accountability

  • Who are you currently accountable for as an individual and a group? Who holds you accountable?
  • What is effective accountability? Are our methods as a group effective?
  • What role do you play in your own accountability and the group accountability?

Group Dynamics

  • What are the traits that make someone successful on this team? What are the traits that make someone unsuccessful on this team?
  • What motivates our group?
  • How does our group dynamic affect the way we get work done

Project Planning

  • What has worked in other projects you have done? How have you dealt with setbacks?
  • How do you connect with the process of planning? Do you like it/not like it? How does this impact you/your group?
  • How do we manage our time? How does that affect our ability to complete our projects?
Now What?
  • What does this activity tell you about the strengths of your group? The areas for improvement?
  • What’s one commitment each person can make?
  • What are three lessons the group has learned that they can continue to work on?
  • How can we implement these lessons in our school/organization?
  • What can you do differently moving forward?