The Magic of Playing Outdoors
Close your eyes and try to remember the warm summer evenings of your childhood. All the neighbourhood kids had their meeting point: you could see a bunch of kids, younger and older, moving about. Together they discovered how many games they could come up with using a ball, a tree branch, a pile of stones or simply your body, for example, by climbing. The endless fun lasted until darkness fell and began all over again the next day…
In the same spirit, we planned the Creative Chaos outdoor edition workshop. Our meeting point was of course the square in front of VIVISTOP in Telliskivi Creative City. Together we tried to come up with fun activities by repurposing a selection of red objects. Red? Yeah, red indeed, because why not :)
As usual, the workshop was kicked off with a team building exercise. Following each other in a line, the first kid could show the movements to the rest. Taking turns in front of the line, everyone experienced what it was like to lead the group and to follow the group leader. Another important exercise came right after which aimed to remind us that every object could have a hundred different uses, if only we decided so. In the game “This is not a pillow”, every child had to invent a new purpose for the pillow: it became a basket to carry on your head, a flying carpet, a frisbee, a blanket…
When the kids were properly warmed up and awoken with playful energy, the time came to crack the brains, too. We gave them the task to use 5 red objects to create 5 new games that all 5 of them could take part in. The objects were replaced every 6 minutes, so to inspire quick decision-making and encourage them to quickly test out ideas. The initial state of confusion was very soon replaced by productive brainstorming and the best and funniest game combinations were discovered in the process of trying things out. We highly recommend doing this at home too!
Two players put the buckets on their heads while the rest use the arrows to show them in which direction to move. The game continues until it’s fun or until the bucket-wearing players accidentally bump into each other.
Red floor brush
Using the arrows, the players create a circle and put the floor brush in the middle of it. The aim of the game is to catch the brush before it falls down to the ground. Seems easy? Actually, it isn’t, the floor brush tends to fall down really quickly under the pull of gravity.
Observe the chair from different angles and try to jump over it. What’s the chair’s highest point? Who can jump the farthest?
One player becomes the catcher. If you get caught, you have to give away one clothing item. If you’re afraid of getting naked, run faster!
Whoever sits on the ladder must have their eyes and ears covered while the other players agree on the word to perform. No matter if you transform into an animal or vehicle, the right guess will be made in the end.
And so it is: making up new games comes easily. We only had to gather the kids together, chose some playthings and the rest was up to them to decide. A player hides in all of us… Let’s go outside and play!
Workshop: Vera Naydenova and Eva Liisa Kubinyi
Text: Eva Liisa Kubinyi
Photos: Vera Naydenova