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Some games philosophy and suggestions for the new AWANA year

Well I see I have been getting a lot of visitors lately. Perhaps with the beginning of a new Awana year fast approaching everyone is looking for games to use, or at least relevant ideas. So here is my games philosophy sprinkled with a few helpful tips for starting the year.

Start with Ice Breaker games. Use games where people must remember names of the others or where they must to mingle and ask questions about others within their groups, it is not good to jump into fierce competition right away, I feel that if someone knows their opponents it is easier to feel for them, and helps to prevent the win at all cost syndrome, which is a good reason why friends should be put on opposite teams, most friends are not out to kill each other, but are out to help each other. Although, it does depend on the strength of their friendship and there are some who really good at emotional detaching themselves from their action, they are numb y, but hopefully you will not have to deal with too many of those type and if you should have to deal with them they should be asked to sit out and contemplate their actions, or leave and not come back until they can behave. Awana is not really designed for children that do not want to be there, and if they consistently refuse to follow the rules there is really no recourse other than to send them home.

When moving towards competitions, start with an explanation of sportsmanship, and explain the importance of following the rules. Also a discussion of following the spirit of the rules vs. the letter of the rules would not hurt. Another good point to make is that most anyone can win well and deal with winning, but how you deal with losing really says a lot about you. Are you a gracious loser or do you go stomping off with your head down? You should be able to maintain your dignity when you lose, because you gave your all. What else can you give besides everything you have? So, it is important for clubbers to put forth their best effort, but if that is not enough to overcome others so be it. If it is truly their best then there is nothing else that could have been done, and they can be satisfied. If the clubber become upset their best effort is consistently not yielding wins, then their focus should instead be directed towards improving each time instead of beating out the competition each time. This may eventually lead to wins, but if not they have improved in their skill and ability, and can be satisfied with that. It is important to have the unattainable standard as the ultimate goal and clearly obtainable objects to keep them pushing toward the idealized standard. Here is an illustration: we are commanded by God to be Holy as He is Holy, however this is unattainable in our earthly state, so do we quit trying or do we keep pushing on in small incremental steps. Hence, it is important to balance the realistic perspective with the idealist perspective, you got to have both. The realistic will get you though the obstacles, but it is hopeless without the dream of the idealistic, and on the other hand the idealistic will establish the ultimate dream, but is hopeless at getting there without the realistic steps.

Although friendly competition is helpful, it can often become frustrating when the competition goes beyond that point. All too often many want to toss out any friendly competition, which can actually be extremely beneficial between fairly even match opponents, in favor of having everyone win all the time. Do not fall into the trap that every child must win a price every time; all excel in different areas, so it is important not to give children a false sense of accomplishment in an area where they are not achieve. Rather we must look for opportunities to reward for improvement, for when we award all equally we also discourage them from pushing one another to achieve. We keep the bar low and they will all jump low, if we raise the bar some may not get over at first, but eventually they will, then we raise it again. We cannot leave the bar down low or they will stay down there where they are comfortable. Children should not be lead to feel that they are excelling in an area which they are really not, conversely we do not want them walking away discoursed. So what are we to do? Continue awarding the winners, while also searching for improvement and ways to encourage the improvement. Establishing most improved awards is a good idea. Perhaps have someone time clubbers in events so they can see if they can beat their personal best each time. I am not recommending taking the fun out of games their does not have to measurable improvement every time and often times there may not be measurable improvement, but searching for ways to encourage improvement, and leaving old ways such as friendly completion. While also not be afraid to implement some completely noncompetitive, team building, and lesson reinforcement activities amongst these are also important, but a topic for a different post. I hope I have given some good ideas and suggestions here, and do not be afraid to let me know your thoughts.

Update: New Direction

I have been overlooking this site for some time now. Now the time has now come that for me to reevaluate what direction I wish to take this site in. I am not sure whether I will start restart the list of games played or not. Most likely if I do I will add more commentary to the games, and more helpful suggestions each week, because I do not think the list alone is helpful to many as it is now. I do have a few games described, but would like to add many more. I am also considering added a links page to more resources. So with this new plan in mind if you happen upon this site, please feel free to submit your Awana game ideas either in an email to: NKingstown@gmail.com, or if you believe it pertains to a specific post then feel free to add your ideas as a comment. Then I shall add them to the list of games, I am not going to be able to build a large list of games nor build a truly valuable site without your input so please submit your ideas.

Awana Games

Trek 24/7 played
baton relay
bean bag toss across
poison

Sparks played
baton relay
bean bag toss across
Colors

Truth and Training played
steal the bacon style flag football (aka one on one football)
Score was Blue team 4 Green team 5

Awana Games

Well I started have actually used the Trek 24/7 in my post now. I had not used it before because I could not remember whether they were Journey 24/7 or Trek 24/7 and I did not want to get it wrong. Now to be official I have started to call them by their official name Trek 24/7

Trek 24/7 played
steal the bacon style flag football aka one on one football

Sparks played
Colors
line tag with a tagger and an untagger both with bandannas to ID them
keep away

Truth and Training played
Circle soccer
The score was Red 15 Yellow 12 Green 10 Blue 12 points are bad in this game so was Green 1st Yellow 2nd Red 3rd Blue 4th

Thanksgiving

Well tonight was an excellent night at Awana. Many people were back for Thanksgiving break including Mrs. Banner, whom at first I did not put two and two together I was thinking I know her went I saw her talking to Logan, but I just did not realize that it was Mrs. Banner because she was gone and it was so weird just seeing her standing there. So in my mind it was like that is someone I know and have known, but I then though that oh wait this is someone who has been gone for a while. It was really weird how that occurs, you just associate them with other people you know and therefore to not realize that they are someone who has been gone. For example I think is what it is is Mrs. Banner reminds me of Mrs. Smith a lot so for some reason I confuse the two of them in some regards. Anyhow I saw a couple other friends at Awana tonight who I have not seen in a little while, since they have been away at college. I saw Peter and Dave back for thanksgiving, but of them were there tonight.

Other resources

There is a list of variously Awana Game ideas complied here
more Awana Games

Welcome

Welcome to AwanaGames.net. I am the Awana game director at QBC and I have created this new site to keep everyone involved in Awana at QBC updated on games and for everyone at QBC to convey ideas they may have for games. It is also intended to be a resource for anyone involved in Awana anywhere.

Bible memory fun

Bible memory fun

Awana Games

JV played
four way tug a war
flurry and finesse

Sparks played
North, Central, South America
keep away

Truth and Training played
flurry and finesse

Truth and Training score

Truth and Training scores were as follows Red 21 points Yellow 18 points Green 11 points and Blue 4 points. I have put this here for anyone interested. I usually do not keep score much, but sometimes I do, so there is no guarantee of a score every week.

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