Activity Name: What Can I Do With This?
Time Required: 15-20 minutes
Ages: 6 and up
Introduction: The ability to brainstorm and think creatively about different uses for things is an important part of Resource Resilience. In this activity, family members will “think outside the box” as they try to come up with creative uses for ordinary household items.
What you need:
- Odd objects that can be used for a variety of things (staple remover, wire whisk, kitchen tongs, strainer, paper clip, etc.) – 1 per pair
- 1 paper sack per pair
- 1 piece of paper per pair
- 1 writing utensil per pair
Place one object into each bag, and number the bags. Divide family members into pairs. (If there are only 2-3 family members, work together for this activity, or compete individually.) Give each pair a piece of paper, pen or pencil, and one bag with a mystery object inside. Have each pair choose a scribe who will write down the pair’s answers. Explain that when you say to start, they are to open the bag and take out the object. Then they are to brainstorm all the ways their object
could be used. The scribe is to list as many ideas as the pair can think of, writing the object’s number on the top of the list. Encourage everyone to be creative. At the end of the time limit (3-5 minutes), have the pairs put the object back into the bag and pass the bag to the next pair. The pairs can then complete the same process with their new object. You can continue rotating, giving pairs as many turns as you have time for. When the activity is completed, invite each pair to share their list. You can compare the lists, giving points either for creative and original responses or for
the number of responses each pair listed.
- How hard was it to come up with ideas at the beginning of the activity?
- Did thinking creatively become easier as time went on?
- How can using our resources in creative ways be a good skill during a hard challenge?