Target audience : Best suited to grassroots-level groups/faith communities, civil society organisations and human rights defenders.
To raise energy levels and lighten the mood in sessions focused on identifying, analysing and solving problems.
A fun, physical exercise in which people do the opposite of what they are told.
Ensure there is enough space in the training room for participants to walk around freely. Ask participants to move tables and chairs if necessary.
Announce that it’s time to take a break and do something completely different! Ask the group to spread out around the room.
Go through the following steps:
Instruct participants to walk when you say “WALK” and to stop walking when you say “STOP.” Issue a series of these commands, in any order, for 20 to 30 seconds.
Announce that the meaning of the commands has been swopped, so “WALK” means stop, and “STOP” means walk. Issue a series of commands for another 30 seconds.
Announce two new commands: When they hear “NAME” everyone should say their own name out loud; and when they hear “CLAP” everyone should clap once. They should continue to either stop or walk while they do this.
Practice these two new commands together with “WALK” and “STOP” (which still have the meanings reversed).
Finally, announce that the meaning of the last two commands has been swopped – when you call “NAME” everyone should clap and vice versa.
Continue playing until five minutes is up.
TIP! A video tutorial for this exercise is available here.
Thank the group for their willingness to play. Say something along the following lines:
Life can be very serious sometimes, especially when we are thinking about problems and how to solve them! It’s good to take a break and have fun once in a while.