Be Board!

PATHWAY
Community: Church Community
AGE GROUP
12-14 years
Anticipate Time
3 hours min
GROUP SIZE
2-5, 5-15, 15-30
Values
Discernment, Initiative, Love, Patience, Respect, Self Control, Thoroughness

Synopsis

Participants create a Board Game which explores a value or virtue selected by them. The game will then be enjoyed together with a group of children in a ‘Gamesfest’ and then given to the child for their enjoyment – from friend to friend!

Through participation in this Pursuit, the Pathfinder will:

  1. Show encouragement to other age groups within your Church
  2. Practice being a positive role model to younger members of the Church
  3. Show care in completing the assigned task

Scripture Focus

Memory Verse

2 Timothy 2:15
Be a good workman, one who does not need to be ashamed when God examines your work.

It’s good to belong to a church family where each member cares for the other. I can be enriched as I share of myself and my talents with others who are different to myself. Their perspective on life can clarify mine and allow me to grow.

Preperation

  1. For the initial Stimulus activity, plant a friendly counsellor behind a bed sheet or blanket divider in your meeting room or a separate room, and scatter lollies all around him / her.
  2. Obtain (beg, borrow) a number of examples of commercially produced board games to help with the brainstorming process.
Materials
  • Lollies and some bed sheets or blankets- for the Stimulus activity
  • Art Layout equipment
  • Computer (if suitable desktop publishing program is available – OPTIONAL only)
  • Concordances, Bibles
  • Commercially produced board games

Outline

1. Stimulus Activity
Inform the group that you have just heard some terrible news. _(Name)__ your beloved counsellor has been kidnapped and held to ransom. Rumour has it, though that he/she is not far away and we’ve decided to stage a daring escape plan. We’ll storm the area, and if we work quickly, we just may be able to avert the captors and escape unharmed with our ‘man’. To do this, speed is imperative. We must work quickly and quietly – Dash in, find our man and dash home with him/her. We must let no one or nothing distract us from our mission, or all may be lost.! OK? Ready? Let’s DO IT!

(Let the Pathfinders search for the missing person – give them clues if the person is in another room. Move quickly and when you find him/her, don’t comment on the lollies, look furtively around and just encourage them to run back quickly before they are ‘caught.’ – You may like to have someone ‘storming’ in from the next room to give a sense of urgency to the situation)
Debrief:

  • How did it feel to put your life ‘at risk’?
  • Comment on who obviously was distracted with the lollies (and is now probably eating them)
  • What was our mission?
  • Who obeyed our mission to the letter?
  • Did our mission include eating lollies?
  • Were the lollies yours to take?
  • How would you label those who took the lollies? (Dishonest)
  • How easy is it to build our lives on such virtues as honesty, courage, kindness and self-control?
  • If we do not honour those virtues in private as well as public, are they really a part of us?
  • What are the fruit of the spirit?
  • How important is it to live by these character traits?

Share how we are able to be role models and mentors to younger children and really help them understand what these virtues look like ‘with skin on’. Say: We can challenge them to imagine what honesty looks like in a number of situations, what courage is like in these situations, and what self-control and respect are really like. One way to help them explore these things is to create a game through which they can discuss, practice, and role play these traits of character.

2. Share the intent of this Pursuit: to design and create a board game which teaches a particular value or virtue. Ask the participants to decide on the age level of the recipients of their board game. Group members may work alone or in pairs, remembering that the more games produced, the better. 
NB. Right from the outset, have in mind the specific children you plan to invite to the Gamesfest so that you can ensure that enough games are made for at least one per family.

3. Study the plans, strategies and novel features of a number of different board games. Show the samples of commercially produced games for your intended age group. Contact teachers or child-care workers to gather ideas and advice if you need it. 

4. Carefully consider which value will serve as your game focus. 
(Ensure that it is one which is not too abstract for the age level of the children). 
Values / Virtues to consider:

  • Kindness
  • Sharing
  • Friendliness
  • Playing Fairly
  • Courtesy
  • Obedience
  • Cheerfulness
  • Thankfulness
  • Courage
  • Honesty
  • Peaceability
  • Self – Discipline
  • Dependability
  • Respect
  • Love
  • Unselfishness
  • Sensitivity
  • Justice and mercy

5. Brainstorm a list of associated issues or life situations which may be included in your game. Research appropriate Bible texts which may be used.

6. When designing the look of your game board remember the value of bold colour and its appeal to children. Writing needs to be clear, bold and large. Remember the importance of neatness.

7. When all board games are complete, design and send invitations to the children who are to receive them, inviting them to a “Games Fair”. Provide drinks and snacks and a festive atmosphere (music, balloons etc). Share at the outset that you are looking for words of encouragement and kindness, compliments and fair play during the games session. Award stickers to those who do this. Play some active party games before attempting the Board Games, to work off some excess energy. (Let your Pathfinders take responsibility for leading these games.) Encourage and affirm fair play and positive attitudes. Point out when the children are displaying the values being explored. Use the value labels in your talking with them. Use them to affirm and to correct negative behaviour. Enjoy the sharing!

8. Present each child in attendance with a friendship card (written from one of your Pathfinders) and one of the games (one per family at least) at the close of the ‘Gamesfest’.

Debrief

Reflection
  • What was the most challenging part of this Pursuit?
  • What was the most rewarding?
Interpretation
  • What did I learn about myself?
  • What did I learn about human relationships?
  • What did I learn about children?
  • What did I learn about the value or attitude I explored?
  • What skills did I really develop in this Pursuit?
  • Which person seemed to have the most effective rapport with the children and what did they do to create this positive relationship?
  • What place does ‘fun’ have in Christianity and learning?
Application
  • How can you put these attitudes and values to work to create a good relationship with children?
  • How can you best show this value or attitude you have explored to others?
  • How will this Pursuit affect your behaviour towards others now and in the future?
  • How can you continue contact with these children and show them the attitudes and values we have focused on in the game?
Commitment
  • What kind of role model are you? What values do you show by your actions?
  • Which is your ‘challenge’ value — the one that you really need to work on this week?
  • Write in your Journal how you will do that.