In this activity, the team is tasked with tossing and catching a beanbag while everyone is in a circle. The aim to improve the time taken to complete one round of tossing and catching.
Small beanbags. You can substitute it with a ball or something that can be safely tossed and caught.
Space Required: Large. Outdoors or indoors.
Group Size: 6 – 20 participants.
Total Time: 25 – 30 minutes
- 5 minutes to brief and setup
- 10 – 15 minutes for the activity
- 10 minutes to review and debrief
- Instruct participants to form a large circle.
Running the Activity
- Explain the activity: In this activity, the team is tasked with tossing and catching a beanbag, with the aim of improving the time taken to complete the round. Each person in the team must catch the beanbag, and the last person will complete the round by tossing the beanbag to the first person. As a team, you must remember the sequence in which the beanbag was tossed as you must match this sequence in subsequent rounds.
- Once ready, pass the beanbag to one participant who will start the activity. The facilitator will note the time taken to complete one round.
- After Round 1, the facilitator will inform the team of the time taken. Challenge the team to complete the task in a faster time. When they are ready, they can begin Round 2 — the beanbag must be tossed in the same order as Round 1. The facilitator will time them again.
- At the end of Round 2, announce the time taken to finish the round. Then give the team 2 minutes to strategise how they can further improve their time.
- Repeat the task at least 2 more times or until the team cannot best their previous times.
- Each person in the team must catch the beanbag.
- If anyone drops the beanbag, the team must restart from the first person.
Suggested Learning Outcomes
Activity Guidance and Notes
This activity starts off simple — the challenge lies in the subsequent rounds when the group has to improve their times! Through this activity, the team sees how it is always possible to improve a process, and how each individual has to play his or her part in order for the team to succeed.
As the facilitator, it’s important to keep the team morale high. If anyone forgets the sequence to pass the beanbag, help them out by reminding them who’s next. If a participant does drop the beanbag, be supportive and encourage the others in the team to be supportive as well. Allow the team to come up with their own ideas on how to improve their times.
- For a different challenge, get the team to reverse the order in which they toss the beanbag. This requires more focus and cooperation between the team members, and tests their ability to deal with fast-paced change.
- To make it even more challenging, establish two different sequences with two different beanbags. Challenge the team to complete both sequences simultaneously.
- After one or two rounds, get the participants to change their positions in the circle.
- To increase the difficulty, run the first round without informing the group that they have to remember the sequence in which the beanbag was thrown.
- For a group where the participants have just met each other, instruct participants to call out the name of the person they are throwing the beanbag too. This allows the group to get to know each others’ names in a fun way.
Suggested questions to ask:
- What was your strategy to complete the activity?
- How easy or difficult was it to improve your times in subsequent rounds?
- How important was communication during this activity?
- How well did the team respond to the challenge to improving your times after each round?
- How did you feel when someone dropped the beanbag?
- What did you learn from the activity?