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Explain their reasons for doing what they do. "I like to read stories at bed time because it keeps them from talking, calms them down, is comforting and sometimes distracts them from homesickness"
Are aware of their own strengths and weaknesses and are focused on their own goals and desire to grow
Offer compliments and positive reinforcement: "I really liked the way you..."
Remember that we all learn from our mistakes and allow other student leaders to struggle and make mistakes (after setting them up for success)
Participate like a model sixth grader when others are leading
Create opportunities for others to lead: "_____ is going to explain the cabin constitution"
Are committed to creating positive relationships with all student leaders and an inclusive student leader community
Check in with other student leaders: "How was your day?" or "How did that feel?"
Help other student leaders debrief: "How did that go?" "How can we make it better next time?"
Offer specific observations "I've noticed that we like to talk to each other when kids are lining up for meals and that the kids are also really chatty at that time"
Include self in providing feedback "My kids have been forgetting their nametags and I'm going to be extra careful to make sure I check them for appropriate clothes and gear before we leave the cabin"
Redirect self and peers when appropriate “Let’s spread out for the hosts so we are accessible.”
Relay Lock Race - Each person selects a partner. They stand back to back and lock arms by the elbows while holding their own stomach with their hands. Give the instruction to get from one side of the cabin or field to the other. Don't give them specific instructions on how to get to the finish line other than they can't let go of their stomachs. This causes creativity and laughter.
Shoe Game – Have everyone take off their shoes and put them in a pile in the middle of the room. Mix the shoes up. Divide the students into 2 groups. See which group can find their shoes and put them on first. When they have their shoes on the team done first must sit on the floor.
2 Truths and a Lie - Each team member tells 2 true facts and one lie to the group. The rest of the cabin tries to guess who it is and which fact is the lie.
Sculpting - Give your cabin different supplies such as newspaper, scissors, construction paper, glitter, straws, tape, string, etc. and tell them to create a sculpture that represents their cabin's spirit. Have them explain the significance.
To Be Or Knot To Be – Form a circle facing each other (the difficulty of the activity increases, the greater the number of students in the group). Students close their eyes and reach across the circle with their right hand to grasp the right hand of another student. They should pretend that they are shaking hands - but hold on! With eyes open, have each student reach across the circle with their left hand and grasp the left hand of a different student. No student should be holding both hands of the same person. Now, without letting go, have the students untangle themselves. The result should be a circle of intertwined circles, or one large circle.
Ball of String - While standing in a circle; pass a ball of string from one member to another. The rules are only the person with the string can talk. After everyone has had their turn to speak and share their feelings, there will be a web of string. This web illustrates the interconnected nature of group process. Everything they do and say affects the cabin. Now toss a balloon in the middle and have them try to keep it. They are not allowed to touch it. This symbolizes “teamwork”.
Line Up - Divide the group into 2. Each team will compete against each other to see who can get the challenge done faster. Challenges could be line up according to birthdays, alphabetically by first name or last name, age, etc. Try the same challenges without talking.
Machinery - Divide the group into teams. Assign each group to build a certain machine with their own bodies such as a toaster, washing machine, vacuum cleaner, lawn mower, television, etc. Give them time to work it out. Then they build the machine and the other teams guess what it is.
Amnesia Game - A participant is identified as suffering from amnesia. That person needs to pretend not to know anything about the past. The rest of the group tells some things that help the amnesia victim to remember and to become the same person as before. The amnesia person can ask questions to gain more insight. Some questions could be “What would I do in a certain case,” “What is my favorite saying”
Name Crostics - Give a piece of paper to every student and ask them to write their name in the middle of the paper about a half an inch high. When given the signal, the students should move around the room, attaching other names to their name if the letters fit (like a crossword puzzle). The person who is able to attach the most names is the winner.
All Aboard - Take a large sheet or blanket and spread it on the floor. Have all the students stand on the sheet together. Once they have done this fold the sheet to make it smaller. Again, have all the students get on the sheet. Continue this process. Eventually, the sheet will be so small that the students will need to use a great deal of cooperation, teamwork, and ingenuity to get the whole class on the sheet without anyone falling out/off the sheet.
Minefield - Have group discuss things that are detrimental to functioning as a group. For each characteristic/action, throw an object into the playing space, the "minefield." Have group choose partners. One partner is blindfolded at one end of field. The non-blindfolded partners stand at the opposite end of the field and try to talk their partners through the minefield without running into any of the obstacles.
Create A Monster - Make a monster that walks with both hands and feet on the ground. The monster must have one less arm than the number on the squad and one more foot. Once the monster is created, it has to move five feet and make a sound.
Encouragement - Have a piece of paper for every student with one name on each page. The team sits in a circle. Everyone has 30 seconds to write one positive thing on each student’s sheet (30 seconds per sheet, then pass them). At the end, each student goes home with a sheet with many encouraging statements. A variation of this game is to have each team member have their own paper taped to her back.
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