Leadership Inspirations Activities

Zoo

A rhythm keeping and memory game for the whole group

Duration

10 minutes

Team Stage

Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing

Type Of Activity

Game, Energizer

Materials

None

 

SUMMARY

 
Your group becomes a zoo in this fun rhythm keeping game. Each person will represent an animal and its their job to pass the beat to someone else in the group using only their unique hand signals.

 

SET UP

  • Have your group sit together in a circle.
  • Everyone needs to choose a unique hand motion that represents a particular animal
    • For example someone might wiggle their hand as a fish, or make both hands into antlers on their head for a moose.
  • Go around the circle and have everyone share their motion.
    • Encourage participants to try to remember as many as they can – they will need to know them for the game.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Start the rhythm by patting your own knees twice and then clapping once. This pattern will be continued nonstop by the group throughout the duration of the activity.
    • “Pat, Pat, Clap”
    • Whatever pace you choose sets the rhythm and speed for the game.
  • After everyone is on the beat, the game starts with everyone saying together “1, 2, Let’s play Zoo”
  • Game plays almost like a game of catch – where one person starts with their own hand motion and then passes it to another person in the group by doing their hand motion.
  • The pattern is on the beat like this:
    • Pat, Pat, My Motion
    • Pat, Pat, Someone Else’s Motion
  • The next player must start immediately on the next measure of the “Pat, Pat, Clap”, if they are delayed in responding, are off the beat, or can’ think of anyone else’s motion, they are out and should remove themselves from the circle.
  • Play continues in this way until there are just two people left.

VARIATIONS

  • Speed the pace up to make the activity harder.
  • If you don’t want to eliminate anyone from the game, just challenge the group to see how long they can go without messing up.
  • For larger groups consider splitting your group in half.
  • For another fun rhythm keeping game try Yours, Your Neighbors.

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?

Alignment

  • Are we the only ones that define our purpose? What or who influences our purpose?
  • How do we communicate our purpose to new members or people outside of our group?
  • Why is it important that we all understand the purpose of our group/activity/etc.?

Teambuilding

  • When has your group worked well together in the past? When have they not worked well together?
  • When has (something that happened in the activity) happened in the past with your group?
  • What habits or actions make a successful or effective team? What are your group’s opportunities for growth when working together?

 

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?