Working in an acute residential setting, many clients come and go without learning much about each other. Sometimes a sudden boost of intakes brings many strangers together at once. Learning what the clients love about their leisure time is a great way to initiate discussions and find common ground with each other.
“Leisure Guess Who?” is a versatile leisure education game that lets clients learn more about each other using a fun format. The objective is to guess whose answers are being read from a previously completed handout. This activity works best with a medium-sized group of about 12-20 participants, but adaptations could make any size group work. The handout can be modified for your population and group setting. Participants will come away from the group with a better view of their peers and many topics for conversation.
This activity could be completed in any room appropriate for your group size.
“Leisure Guess Who?” handout–or adapted for your clients.
This leisure education activity is appropriate for most populations. Some assistance may be needed with lower functioning participants.
Need Areas Addressed
Leisure awareness, leisure exploration, leisure education, appropriate social interactions, empathy, connecting with peers, activity identification, coping skills, sober leisure, identifying leisure barriers, setting leisure goals, and many more (depending on what you put on your handout).
- Have each participant fill out the “Leisure Guess Who?” handout (or one adapted to your group).
- Collect all the sheets.
- Read the answers provided on each sheet. Have the participants guess either verbally or in writing who they thought wrote those answers.
- Reveal the correct participant.
- Repeat until all handouts have been read.
- Debrief on the subjects discussed.
Points could be awarded for the first participant to come up with the correct answer, but they are not necessary.
Staff could help participants fill out “Leisure Guess Who?” sheets if they cannot read or write.
Encourage the participants to wait until all answers are read before guessing. This allows them to learn more about their peers.
One of the questions I usually use involves leisure activities the participant always wanted to try but never got a chance. During the group, I write all these answers on a dry erase board. After we play the game, we discuss the barriers to not being able to do these activities. This strategy could work with any question depending on the topics you want to address.
- What were some things you learned about your peers during this activity?
- What leisure activities mentioned are you most interested in doing/trying?
- What was the most surprising answer you heard?
- Did you discover anything in common with someone from the group?
- What were some answers a lot of the group had in common?
- Do you feel you know your peers better after doing this activity?
“Leisure Guess Who?” is one of the go-to leisure education activities I use when there are several clients that don’t know each other. It doesn’t require many materials or prep work. Creating a handout specific to your clients and their needs, however, will make group discussion more worthwhile.
What’s great about this game, in my experience, is it never fails to captivate the participants. Working with a room full of teenage boys can get pretty rowdy. Most times I play this game, there are actually times when I could hear myself reading.
Enjoy and have fun!
Tell the Real Recreation Therapist:
What is a game you use to help your participants get to know each other better?
How would you change this game to cater to your population?
Do you have a favorite leisure exploration activity?
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