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Subject: Game suggestions for assisted living residents rss

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Eric T
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I am hoping for some suggestions from the community. I attended a gaming session with the residents of an assisted living facility in Broomfield Colorado this evening hosted by Time Well Spent games. I felt it was important for my children and I to give back to the community and practice The Corporal Works of Mercy.

There was a good mix of residents but most seemed to have various degrees of dementia or motor skill issues--drawing for example was difficult.

Wurfel Bingo was tried and seemed to overwhelm most of the players. The concept of having to guess where to place a number seemed difficult. Other games were tried as well including some Yahtzee variants like Yamslam with similar results. Past games like Streams also had similar results.

The games that did well and were very well received were games like Cardline or Timeline. Cardline was more of a social experience. Choose one card, discuss where it should go in the line of cards, and then cheer if it was placed correctly or have a brief discussion about why it was wrong while the next player was choosing the next card to play.

The hope was to eventually get games like Ticket to Ride played but that is not an option anytime soon. Short quick, easy decision games will be enough. In the end, the social experience is more important for the residents anyway but I would welcome suggestions for other games I might have missed.

Thanks

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A boy named Sioux
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It's difficult if the drawing is a problem but if that problem could be surmounted then something like Jaipur or Yardmaster Express might work. Maybe playing a solo game like Friday cooperatively might be a good option?

And if you aren't using these yet, some kind of card holder like this one could be useful.


Also, much respect to you for doing good.
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Pandora Caitiff
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How about something like Love Letter? You only have to decide between two options each turn, and while it relies on hidden information, more becomes openly available as the turns play out
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MARCUS GABRIEL
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"Five cents, please," his front door said when he tried to open it. The toll door had an innate stubborness to it... UBIK
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I'm thinking that Splendor might work. The chips are easy to pick up, the cards are fairly easy to read (I am very nearsighted and color-challenged and can play easily), and there is no requirement to hold a hand of cards. Rules are simple (basically a set collection game).

I'm going to follow this thread as I have often wondered about games in assisted living centers and homes for older residents. I think it would be a much better way to spend your days than watching television. Spending time with others also is very healthy at all ages. Your doing good work. Keep us posted on what you find success with.
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Randy Smith
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Qwirkle might be an option. The pieces are easy to pick up. However, being color-blind can be a factor since matching colors is an option in the game.
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TTDG
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Quote:
The games that did well and were very well received were games like Cardline or Timeline. Cardline was more of a social experience. Choose one card, discuss where it should go in the line of cards, and then cheer if it was placed correctly or have a brief discussion about why it was wrong while the next player was choosing the next card to play.


That makes me think Wits & Wagers might be good, particularly if you can get a moderator to run it.
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Dan
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Dixit seems like a good suggestion. No one has an advantage, because it is all about perception and judgment, rather than any other skill.
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Eric T
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These are all great suggestions. We go every two weeks and I will post additional information to this thread at that time.
Thanks so much for the suggestions
 
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river tam
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ThroughTheDeckGlass wrote:
Quote:
The games that did well and were very well received were games like Cardline or Timeline. Cardline was more of a social experience. Choose one card, discuss where it should go in the line of cards, and then cheer if it was placed correctly or have a brief discussion about why it was wrong while the next player was choosing the next card to play.


That makes me think Wits & Wagers might be good, particularly if you can get a moderator to run it.


For similar reasons I would think Fauna and Terra would be good.

Usually people with dementia have good memory for songs so I am thinking
Encore would be a hit.

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Eric T
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We continued the gaming sessions all year every two weeks. It is an interesting group and they are not overly competitive. Due to issues with wheel chairs and other mobility factors we had to make some modifications to the games.

The games that have been a success so far include:

1. Word on the Street. We play as a group with a goal of getting ten letters off the board in the least amount of tries. Our current record is eight and the residents really seem to enjoy the discussion of various word choices.

2. LCR--I can hear the groans. But this has been a surprise hit for the residents.

3. Bunko--A very simple game to play. The modification here is no movement between rounds. We had some issues with the residents moving from table to table. In the end they just like rolling dice.

4. Cardline animals--We play this as a team game as well. It gives the residents a chance to engage in conversation and discuss each card. We play until we have missed five cards and then count how many we have in line.

5. Wits and Wagers--The residents make their guesses and we give poker chips to the three closest guesses. Three for first, two for second, one for third. We choose cards that are easy to understand and just play a few rounds or set a twenty minute time limit.

6. Codenames--This is a major hit for us. We tried using the regular game but realized the residents were having difficulty seeing the small cards on the table. I ended up making index size cards for all the words in the game and purchasing a magnetic board and magnets to hold the cards in place. I used colored construction paper to make the clue cards for the board. After each guess it is easy to pull the magnet off the word clue and put the correct color card on top. This is the most played game so far this year.

Hopefully there are some games or ideas that will help anybody else who is interested in starting a similar venture. I cannot recommend enough the large magnetic board. It was $50 well spent and it has enhanced all the card games. We use it for Cardline animals and Codenames right now but I can see many other uses for it as well.

It was a slow learning curve finding games that the residents could participate in and the team aspect was a great solution. It allowed us to go to each person and ask them if they had a suggestion. It has increased participation especially for the residents with some physical disabilities that prevent them from doing other activities. One lady just enjoys watching so we made her our honorary referee which really makes her day every time we show up.

I was told tonight that the gaming session is the most anticipated recreational activity at the senior center. I take my oldest daughter most of the time and sometimes will allow a few of the younger children to participate. The residents really enjoy interacting with the children and hopefully my children are learning the value of giving back to the community.

Thanks for reading. If anyone starts a similar play group and needs assistance please let me know.

Happy Gaming
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Niclas Matikainen
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Cool!
I have a friend who is doing the same thing. I shall ask him again about the games he has used. The only one I remember now is Carcassonne without farmers.
 
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William Ford
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gradman2k3 wrote:
The games that did well and were very well received were games like Cardline or Timeline. Cardline was more of a social experience. Choose one card, discuss where it should go in the line of cards, and then cheer if it was placed correctly or have a brief discussion about why it was wrong while the next player was choosing the next card to play.


The Timeline cards are pretty small. That wasn't a problem?
 
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Michael Hyland

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Going by what worked

How about Nobody But Us Chickens?

Geister Geister Schatzsuchmeister - a cooperative game designed for kids that as an adult I found good enough to keep my interest when I played with my son. It's an easy concept, requires some decision making and discussion.

Zombie dice or some version of it like Alien Dice

Paperback as a team game ie 1 deck and they try and find the highest scoring word. Cards could be placed on the lip of a shelf for all to see. The person who's "turn" it is, picks the next card to "buy" and add to the deck.

There might be some way to modify Camel Up- ie larger cards, and use a "game master" to run the game and move the pieces. Might require some thought and work to get it to run good.

Mad City easy version - requires them to arrange tiles to score points, but all combos will score something you just have to make a square. Requires some coordination and handling of tiles. A person running the game could hand the tiles out.

The more I think about it the more I think that there are probably some interesting high quality children's games like Geister Geister and Cardline Animals, that could do well because they are designed to be handled by kids so they require less coordination sometimes, and have some good decision making but are not too complex.
 
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David Horm
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Blokus needs some fine motor skills, but this person said the game helped after they suffered a stroke and was trying to rehabilitate their motor skills. Therapeutic Gaming >> Blokus a Big Hit
 
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Virginia M.P.
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This is one of the most inspirational threads I've ever read. You are doing a wonderful thing and I'd love to eventually get something like that started in my community as well. Cheers!
 
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