Gifted children have a keen need to play intellectual games. It is one of the over-excitabilities that they display, and it works when they play these game with like minded peers.
Here’s the Cromwell favourite – the Sofa Game ( we have to improvise with 4 chairs in a line, but you can imagine a sofa!)
Rules to follow:
The rules: (long but worth it!)
This is essentially a memory game. The object of this game is to get 4 members of your team on the “sofa”
To start, have everyone sit down in a circle (incuding the circle) alternating boy/girl/boy/girl. (If there are not enough of one gender, assign someone to join that group and make sure everyone knows… or pick a different qualifier such as seating them team A/then B/then A/then B. It will work as long as everyone knows who is on their team.) This means that two of the 4 designated seats on the couch belong to your team and two belong to the other. Remember the objective is to get the other team out of those seats and your members on.
So, how do you do that?
First, you write everyone’s name on a card and have everyone pull a name out of a hat. Everyone has a different name in their hand (it doesn’t matter if it is their own name). Once everyone is seated and has a name card you can start the game.
There should be one empty chair/place in the circle. Whoever is to the right of that empty place has the opportunity to ask someone to come sit next to him. The first couple people will just guess a name because they do not yet know who holds what name cards. Say the empty seat is next to you and you call the name Jeff… the person with the name Jeff on their card gets up… NOT the person whose name is actually Jeff. Once this “so-called Jeff” comes and sits next to you, you switch name papers. Now YOU have become Jeff and the person who sat next to you has the name you had (which only you know because no one has seen it but you).
Now everyone knows that You are Jeff. There is an empty space where the guy who just sat next to you used to sit. So the person to the right of the empty seat calls another name (Sarah). The person with that name on their card moves to that spot and switches cards with the caller. You now know that the caller’s name is Sarah. You just keep doing this until eventually you call the name (on the card) of someone on the couch and they have to vacate their coveted position.
If the person to the right of the empty spot is on the couch, they will want call someone from their team up to join them. (they will have had to remember from before).
People in the circle will want to remember the name of an opposing team member on the couch, so that in case an empty seat opens up next to them, they can call someone off the couch. A person on the couch will want to remember their own team members’ names so they can call someone on the couch.
Keep in mind however, that YOU may be called onto the couch and be required to remember your own team members’ names as well since it will be up to you to call team members onto the couch.
The only rule of the game is that you can’t call the same name twice in a row. Another note to remember if you are playing boy against girl is that it is the actual gender of the person HOLDING the card that counts, not the gender of the person whose name is on the card. Sarah may be called “Jeff” but she still counts for the girl’s team on the couch.