Follow the Leader/ Copy Cat/ Witch Doctor

Purpose: To develop observation and concentration skills, as well as build a sense of group connection and workability.

Age Group: Around grade 3/4 and up.

Group Size: For medium or large groups, so about 8 students or more. 

How to play:

One person is chosen as the guesser and they go out of the room for about a minute or two (The teacher may also go retrieve them). 

Students will all sit in a large circle facing into the center. 

One person will be chosen as the leader and will start making a specific repeatable motion or gesture. Everyone else in the circle will copy this specific action, and the guesser will reenter the room and stand in the middle of the circle.

The leader will then abruptly change the motion or gesture around every 30 seconds or so, while trying to not let the guesser notice who the leader is. The group must then switch to this new action as soon as they notice the leader change it.

The group should work together smoothly so there does not appear to be any leaders or followers.

The game restarts once either the guesser has picked the correct leader or the guesser has made a certain number of guesses, Usually 3 to 5.

Conclusion: Students will need to concentrate on both the leader as well as the other students in the group. For example, if a student is always late to joining a new action when the guesser is looking at them, they may be able to guess that the leader is across from them in the circle. If some students pay attention to other students besides the leader and copy them after they copy the leader, this can also cause confusion for the guesser and may throw them off the leader’s trail. The leader also has to concentrate on both the guesser and the group as well as when to create a new movement. Once the group’s connection and concentration come together, the game can become very hard to win as the guesser. Likewise, if concentration and teamwork are easily broken the game becomes very easy for the guesser to win.

Source:

https://gillianmaher.wordpress.com/category/weekly-toolbox-adds/

Benefits:

  • Develops observation and concentration skills
  • Builds a sense of group connection and workability
  • Can be a warm up

Limitations:

  • Actions may need to be altered for inclusiveness

Applications:

  • Brain break
  • Gym class
  • Used at the beginning of class to get the blood flowing

Adaptions:

  • Put to music and have the leader be the choreographer
  • Instead of simple movements and actions, use exercises and make it a warmup

 

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