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Children learn through play. As an occupational therapist who works with children and youth, I use games and toys almost every day to help develop important cognitive, visual perceptual, motor, sensory, social, play and leisure skills. While many different types of activities can be used in therapy, this blog focuses on off-the-shelf games and toys that are accessible to most. Whether you are a therapist, parent, teacher, or a game lover like me, I hope you discover something useful while you are here. Learn a different way to play a game you already own or discover a new game for your next family game night. Either way, just go play. It's good for you!

The OT Magazine named The Playful Otter one of the Top 5 Pediatric OT Blogs.


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Reverse Charades

 
Work on motor planning, balance, coordination, agility, body awareness, spatial relations, visualization, core strengthening, upper body stability, problem solving, creative thinking, expressing and reading non-verbal communication, reading body language, motor sequencing, taking turns, following directions, social interaction, play exploration and participation
 
In the box: 720 word & phrases on 360 cards, 1 minute sand timer
Ages 6+, 3+ players
 
I previously blogged about Charades for Kids and what a fun activity that can be used for working on such things as motor planning skills, proprioception, and gross motor skills. Reverse Charades is similar to regular charades, but offers a fun twist to this classic:
  1. Instead of one person acting out and the rest of the players guessing, one person (or team 1) is guessing and everyone else (or team 2) is acting out.
  2. Instead of a turn consisting of acting out one charade, the one minute sand timer is set and players act out (and guess correctly) as many things as they can in one minute.  
Here are several things to think about if you are considering reverse charades over the regular charades for a group:
  • Reverse charades will involve less sitting, more moving.
  • Reverse charades reduces the feeling of being the center of attention if that is undesirable or a player needs considerable help.
  • Reverse charades will move quickly as players move from one card to the next in a single turn. This will require the ability to transition quickly and possibly increased endurance.
  • Reverse charades may boost the confidence of all actors as different interpretations of one thing may be acted and the combination may help the guesser(s) quickly and successfully move through numerous charades.
The cards have one word or phrase on each side. Cards are purple on one side and green on the other. Examples of charades include knitting, broken heart, Frankenstein, stub your toe, bad luck, magic trick, picnic, and brain drain.
 
Try this:
  • Sort through the cards in advance and choose ones that lend themselves to a group, such as orchestra. Then work together to act out charades as a group instead of multiple individuals doing their own thing.
  • Go through the cards before hand and take out any that are inappropriate for the group and/or stack them for the performance level of the players.
  • Break the charade down into steps if the individual does not know where to start or how to proceed. For instance if the task is making a sandwich, cue the individual to pretend to open a jar, remove peanut butter with a knife, spread it on bread, put another piece of bread on top, and eat.
  • Allow sound if an individual's actions may be difficult to interpret, such as mooing if you are acting out a cow, or a motor sound if mowing the lawn.
  •  Be ready with encouragement and keep the atmosphere light and fun.
  • Allow the use of simple, nearby props. 
If you are interested in purchasing this game or just want more information, click on the image below.


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