An opportunity for students to let loose vocally and physically, Samurai is a great way to break the students’ bond to the outside world and welcome them, ninja-style, to the programming space.
- No materials are needed for this activity.
This silly game is a great precursor to any energetic or vigorous activity that seeks to increase excitement and release daily stresses.
- Have your participants spread out around the room and lie down on the floor on their backs.
- Ensuring that none of them can see each other, the participants will collectively count to 21 by having one person at a time contributing a number, starting with 1.
- Have your group stand in a circle, with each participant forming a “Samurai sword” by putting their hands together, palm-to-palm.
- Begin the round having one participant raise their sword above their head, making a ninja sound, and then bringing their sword down, “stabbing” across the circle at another participant.
- While the first Samurai has their sword up, the two Samurais on either side of him/her will “stab” the first Samurai’s belly by moving their sword sideways towards them and making a ninja sound.
- The Samurai who was “stabbed” across the circle then raises their sword while making a ninja sound, and passing the stab to another player.
- Continue playing until the group’s energy has increased.
- There is no pattern to uncover, just the expectation to contribute the next number when appropriate, allowing a participant to say two consecutive numbers if needed.
- Everyone should remain completely silent unless contributing a number. If two or more participants speak at the same time, or a number is repeated, the group must restart the counting from 1.
- Try out the elimination version: When a Samurai raises his/her sword and the two Samurais on either side move to stab him/her, the one who makes the move first stays in the game and the other leaves. Play a game of Rock Paper Scissors or something similar to determine the winner from the last two.
- At no point should participants strike or even touch one another with their swords. Your group should be reminded to simply make the motions only.
After ending the game, reconvene for a brief reflection by posing to them some questions like:
- How were you feeling before this activity? How are you feeling now?
- What were you thinking during the activity?
- Did the activity help you to forget any bad things that may have happened to you today?
Canadian Improv Games. “Samurai.” Improv.ca. Retrieved online from: http://improv.ca/samurai/