This week's game is one that every family should play. It will teach you a lot about yourselves. It will help you family build their communication skills and learn to cooperate. It will also help to illustrate family roles, leadership skills, and teamwork.

After all, our families should be a team, right?


Masking Tape


Explain to your family that they are stuck in the desert, or on a deserted island. In order to protect you from the elements, you will need to build a shelter big enough to house the entire family. The structure must be free standing and be built with only the newspaper and tape provided.

Your family will have 3 minutes to plan how they are going to build the structure. Immediately when the time is up, they have 10 minutes to build the group shelter. When the 10 minutes expires, all family members need to be in/under the shelter.

During the building phase...NO TALKING IS ALLOWED talking. 

Now, when the 10 minutes is up, take a few minutes to "debrief". Fancy word for "talk about it".

How did you communicate when you couldn't talk?
What was hard?
What was easy?
What worked?
What didn't work?
Was your family able to cooperate?
Did anyone ever disagree with another family member's approach? 
What roles did each person play? Did someone take charge? Did someone stand back? Are these the same roles family members play in your everyday family life?
How does this apply to everyday family life?
What would you do differently, given another chance?

***A fun twist...A STORM IS COMING...will your family survive in your shelter?.... Test the structural integrity. Put everyone in the shelter (minus the one who will squirt the water). Use a fan and squirt bottle to create wind and rain.*** 

There is no right or wrong way, but here are some visuals to get you thinking.

Do you think your family could do this?
I miss summer. Anyone else?


  1. Heather, that is so cool. Stopping by from SITS group. Love your site.

  2. Thank you for taking some time to write this post. Where wilderness survival is concerned, there are a few key concerns that most people agree are critical to survival: food, water, and shelter. Regardless of the type of climate or geography you’re in, it’s of critical importance to protect yourself from the elements. See more

  3. This was presented to teachers during a conference -----wonderful way to communicate without words. Wonderful way to build together not only a structure but relationships.

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