|Time:||approx. 20-30 minutes or longer|
|Recommended age:||all ages|
|Size of group:||the more the merrier|
|Time for preparation:||2-3 minutes|
This outdoor game is great for children between 6-8 years and is suitable for a group of more than 14 players. It is a mixture of running, searching, combination and "memory", which is a lot of fun but does not have a specific competitive streak. It is also suitable for "taking over" a large, strange terrain and can also be used as a warm-up for further icebreaker games. You will only need one game leader who has everything under control without having too much work You will need the playing cards (e.g. clubs and hearts) in both colours. There are pairs of cards which go together (e.g. Duke of hearts and duke of clubs). You will need two more cards than the number of children taking part. All of the same coloured cards are fixed onto the a station (e.g. stuck to a post), while the other cards in the other colour are held by the game leader, who is standing in the middle of the circle of stations. The stations all lie within a circles (with a radius of 50-100 m) somewhat hidden but recognisable as a station. The children are split into two teams. One team has two more members than the other team. The children in the larger group are now each allocated to a station. The children in the smaller group receives a card from the game leader on the start signal and must try to find the station with the matching card as quickly as possible. They hand over their card to the child who is waiting there and take their place. The child who is now "free" runs to the game leader with the card, swaps his card for a new one and looks for the station with the matching card to free the next child. In this way, the game can be become an "endless game". However the children become more effective at playing the game as the time goes on because they will remember the positions of the stations and will help each other with tips. You should try and restrict the length of the game to around 15-20 minutes due to the exhaustion of running from station to station, although the kids usually want to play for longer. In this time, each child will run 3-5 times.An entry from Bernhard Stengel-Rutkowski (CVJM Wiesbaden - Germany)
Obviously you can make the difficulty level higher for older children if required, by use of different cards: English vocabulary, countries/ places of interest, song/artist, etc. You can, of course, build in competitive aspects to the game by awarding the kids with a point for each card handed to the game leader. I would, however, advise against this if you are starting a camp off and focus on the co-operative aspects of the game.
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