Language

User Functions

Once upon a time

Type of tool: 
Activity
Duration: 
60-90 min
Topics addressed: 
Communication
Group dynamics
Personal development
An educational game aimed at deepening the understanding and developing the competence communication in a foreign language. Part of the 8KEYCOM set. More about the set at http://educationaltoolsportal.eu/en/tools/8keycom
Aim: 

This tool aims to deepen the understanding and develop the communication in a foreign language competence.

Methodology: 

The tool applies the principles of experiential learning and peer-to-peer learning.

Step by step process: 

Level 1:
The game consists of 120 cards; special symbols ("CHANGE DIRECTION", "NEW STORY", "SKIP") are not used.
1. All participants in a circle. Energizer is necessary.
2. Discuss the 8 key competences with participants, particularly focusing on this game competence. Provide participants with short info about this competence.
3. Facilitator generally describes the main objectives of the game, rules and the playing process.
4. A pack of cards is on the table, players are not dealt any cards.
5. Game master opens the game by taking a card from the pack and placing it on the table.
6. The game master starts telling a story and the round starts clockwise.
7. After this, all players take a card from the pack in turn, and cards are placed into a spiral on the table, as the story is told taking inspiration from the picture on the card and trying to make up a consistent story.
8. The game lasts until all cards are used or when the game master decides it is time to finish.
9. When the game has finished, the facilitator starts debriefing (please have a look at the Questions for debriefing).

Level 2: (suitable for a smaller group)
The game consists of 120 cards; special symbols ("CHANGE DIRECTION", "NEW STORY", "SKIP") are not used.
1. All participants in a circle. Energizer is necessary.
2. Discuss the 8 key competences with participants, particularly focusing on this game competence. Provide participants with short info about this competence.
3. Facilitator generally describes the main objectives of the game, rules and the playing process.
4. Every player gets 5 cards and puts them all on the table telling a story based on them at the same time.
5. The story telling starts from the person sitting left to the player who dealt the cards and continues clockwise.
6. The game lasts until all cards are used or when the game master decides it is time to finish.
7. When the game has finished, the facilitator starts debriefing (please have a look at the Questions for debriefing).

Level 3:
1. All participants in a circle. Energizer is necessary.
2. Discuss the 8 key competences with participants, particularly focusing on this game competence. Provide participants with short info about this competence.
3. Facilitator generally describes the main objectives of the game, rules and the playing process.
The game comes with 120 cards, including:
• 8 cards with a special symbol "NEW STORY" (image of the sun in the top corner of the card) allow a player to start a new story during the game (but it has to be this player’s turn). The player starting a new story has to set a new color. The "NEW STORY" card is the only card that does not have to follow the set color.
• 8 cards with a special symbol "CHANGE DIRECTION" (image of a cross in the top corner of the card) change the order of players in the opposite direction.
• 8 cards with a special symbol "SKIP"(image of the hand on the top corner of the card) mean that the person sitting next to you should miss his/her turn.
Corners of the cards are colored – yellow, red, blue. Depending on the first card’s color and direction, the next card added has to be with the same color and put on the table by the next player continuing the story at the same time. If the player does not have the necessary color, the player must take a new card from the pile until his/her card matches the color and can be played out. If there are no more cards in the middle of the table, the player is skipped and it is the next player’s turn.
4. In the beginning of the game, every player gets 3 cards. The rest of the cards stay in the middle of the table.
5. The game master opens the game by taking one card from the spiral in the middle of the table and starts telling a story (every player can add maximum 3 sentences per card).
6. The round starts clockwise.
7. The game lasts until all cards are used or when the game master decides it is time to finish.
8. When the game has finished, the facilitator starts debriefing (please have a look at the Questions for debriefing).

Debriefing:
1. (Experience) What did you observe during the game (objective facts)? What happened? Did you like the game? What was difficult in this game? Did you have good group work? What did you notice? Which were more difficult moments, what did you enjoy? What were they? Did you have a moment when you would have liked to turn the card (because of the color combination), so you could continue telling your story?
2. (Reflection) How did you feel when talking in a foreign language? Did you feel it was complicated to express yourself in a foreign language?
3. (Conceptualise) What can we learn from it? What do you think, how important it is for people to understand each other? What did you learn yourself from this game? What did you learn together? How important is it to know foreign languages? Which new words did you learn during this game?
4. (Applying) How can we transfer it to our lives? Which skills are you taking with you from this game to everyday life? (for example, the skill to be the group’s leader, notice etc.)

Materials and resources: 

Set of game cards  (120 story cards)The materials needed for this tool are available at https://www.dropbox.com/s/55q60n5wpso733t/FULL_ONCEUPONATIME.pdf?dl=0A manual that includes tool background and process description is available here: http://educationaltoolsportal.eu/en/tools/8keycom

Outcomes: 

Depending on the context in which the tool is used, the learning outcomes are:
-a widened vocabulary of a new foreign language among participants
-developed conversation skills in a foreign language
-developed expression and communication skills
-developed teamwork skills
-developed creativity and innovation
-developed the imagination of the participants
-developed the creation of links and finding of common features
-facilitated understanding of the terminology of nonformal education

Evaluation: 

This tool has been applied and evaluated several times during and after the project. The main advantage of this tool is the ability to ensure active participation of the whole group, and its transferability to different contexts. The tool is also suitable for a younger age group, but it requires the simplest version to be used.

Notes for further use: 

In the Level 3 of the tool, the corners of the cards are colored in yellow, red, blue. Depending on the first card’s color and direction, the next card added has to be the one marked with the same color (modification – you are not allowed to use the same color).
Read the instructions very carefully.
Final debriefing depends on time limits, there can be options: in a big circle or in smaller groups or individually with self-reflection templates. Invite the group to sit in the circle and ask questions to share the experience with the learning task and all the process.
Time dividing:
5 min introduction
60 min playing
25 min debriefing.
There is a possibility to use this tool as an energizer for a period of 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the size of the group.
Also, story cards can be used during the evaluation.
Watch for a situation or a moment when some player would like to turn the card around (because of the color combination) so he/she could continue telling his/her story. It is also allowable.
During the debriefing, some toys (like a speech ball) can be used as an auxiliary material.

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DISCLAIMER: SALTO-YOUTH EuroMed cannot be held responsible for the inappropriate use of these training tools. Always adapt training tools to your aims, context, target group and to your own skills! These tools have been used in a variety of formats and situations. Please notify SALTO-YOUTH EuroMed should you know about the origin of or copyright on this tool.

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