In this activity, participants use their problem-solving skills and flexibility to bite a brown paper bag.
Resources: Brown paper bag(s) and scissors.
Space Required: Can be indoors or outdoors.
Group Size: Small to large, but it is better to have groups no larger than 10. If larger than 10, create smaller groups – each with their own paper bag.
Total Time: 30 minutes
- 5 minutes for the introduction
- 15 minutes for the activity
- 10 minutes to review and debrief
- Participants should stand in a circle.
Running the Activity
- Objective: To be the last person to “bite” and pick up the bag with their teeth.
- Rules: Participants’ feet must remain on the ground and they can only contact the bag with their teeth.
- Put a new paper bag, fully opened, on the floor in the center of the group circle.
- One at a time, participants will approach the bag and bend over to bite and lift the bag with their teeth.
- After each participant, cut off the portion of the bag that was contacted by a participant’s mouth.
- The bag will get smaller each time increasing the difficulty.
- The last person to “bite the bag” wins.
Suggested Learning Outcomes
- Problem Solving
Activity Guidance and Notes
This activity is fun and different. It also requires some physical flexibility and problem-solving skills. Make sure you cut off any portion of the bag contacted by a previous participants mouth. The participants may not make contact with the bag with anything other than their teeth and they may not touch the floor with anything other than their feet.
Suggested questions to ask:
- What assumptions did you make about this activity?
- What assumptions did you make about the ability of others in the group?
- What surprised you?
- How does this activity teach you about perceived limitations?
- How do react when given a task that in which you have no experience?
- How can understanding the limits of your abilities be valuable?