Team Challenges for the Holidays!

Via my Facebook page, Patti (of Candy Yum Yum fame) asks:

Dear Team Challenges, I'm having 11 people stay at my house over Christmas. What one or two events would you recommend for a group of people of all different ages?

While I linked her over to the Box Top Challenge and Use Your Noodle, I wanted to offer a little bit more in the way of holiday activities. How about these, that originally appeared in FamilyFun magazine? Have fun, Patti - and send pictures!

Roll Out the Marble

In this game, cooperation and finesse combine to create an action packed, human marble maze.

Players: 6 or more; ages 6 and up
Where to play: Anywhere

Cardboard tubes (left over from Christmas wrapping or paper towel tubes)
A marble for each team

How to play: Give each person a trough made from a cardboard tube cut in half lengthwise. The players stand in line, two to three feet apart. The first person in line starts with a marble (and can touch it). Without touching the marble, players use the troughs to pass it down the line. As players pass the marble on, they move to the end of the line in time to catch the marble, keeping it in play. Continue in this manner until the team has completed a circuit, that is, once the person who started first in the line is first in line again. If the marble drops, it has to start at the current beginning of the line again.

Team play: Divide into teams of 4 or more and race to see which team can complete a circuit first.

Variation: Play an elimination version: if a person drops the marble, it starts at the beginning of the line again and that person is out – last one standing is the winner.

The 15-cent Write, Rip, Lace, Zip Championship

See if your family has what it takes to single-handedly complete some tasks that are –usually – a piece of cake.

Players: 3 or more; ages 7 and up
Where to play: Around a table

WHAT YOU NEED (for each team)
1 piece of paper per person
1 shoe, with shoelaces tied
15 pennies
1 zip top plastic bag

How to play: Challenge the group (or each team) to complete the following tasks: Write one player's name on each piece of paper then rip all of the papers into four pieces. Untie the shoe, and then tie it back up with a bow. Put the pennies one by one into the zip top bag and seal it. The catch: players can only use one hand; they must work together cooperatively to accomplish each of these tasks. To make it more challenging, ask the group to complete the tasks in less than three minutes.

Team Play: Divide into teams of 3-6 players. Group players by age and have them compete against one another – see which age bracket wins! Have the winning teams compete against one another for top spot.

Variation: Instead of working together, each player must accomplish all of the tasks with only one hand (they can use their other elbow). Once one player finishes, it's the next person's turn, until all players have completed the tasks. Use a stopwatch to see how long it takes each player to finish and then compare times.

Want more fun challenges? Join me on Facebook for daily fun, or check out Team Challenges, the book, just in time for holiday gift giving.

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