For any skeptics out there, let me be the one to reassure you that a quick, engaging 5-minute game at the beginning of the class set up the rest of the period for a hard working, focused class time. Using a little balloon game to jump-start the brain is exactly what the students needed to be able to power through and write some amazing essays.
Here's how the game is played:
- take several balloons and inflate them (use different sizes for different difficulty levels)
- have students stand in a circle holding hands (or holding wrists)
- students have 3 rules: they cannot break the circle link (so cannot drop hands), they can only use their linked hands to hit the balloon (no kicking, no head butts, etc...), and they cannot let the balloon hit the ground
- start off with one balloon in the circle...add more balloons to increase the challenge for the group
- enjoy the game! can last for a few minutes to as long as you want! feel free to add challenges (counting hits, etc...) to increase difficulty