A to Z
Race to the finish and test your vocabulary skills with every letter of the alphabet
+ Each player needs a 5x5 grid with the letters A to Z filled into the spaces (X/Y share a space)
+ Each player needs 25 chips (or similar token) for the spaces on the grid
+ At least 10 cards with different topics on them
+ 1 six-sided die
First, Distribute a board with the letters A to Z in a 5x5 grid (X/Y share a space) and place one chip (or marker) on each letter space.
Next, Choose a category for the game, such as "Animals," "Cities," or "Foods."
Finally, Determine the order of play (random or volunteered)
Share a digital A to Z board with all players with a tool like Google Sheets, and use the cell highlight feature for chips
Roll the die: Each player rolls the die before their turn. If the player rolls a 1, they will play defense on their turn, and can add a chip to any letter space on another player's board. If the player rolls any other number, they will play offense on their turn and will remove chips from their own board.
Set the timer: The active player starts the timer and calls out one word that fits the chosen category for each letter of the alphabet, removing or adding a chip from the corresponding letter space on the board for each word they call out. For example, if the chosen category is "Fruits," the player could call out "Apple," "Banana," "Cherry," etc.
Continue playing: The next player then takes their turn, calling out one word for each letter of the alphabet that fits the chosen category, removing or adding chips accordingly, and so on. Once a player's turn is over, the next player rolls the die to determine whether they will play offense or defense on their turn.
End the game: The game ends when a player successfully removes all the chips from their A to Z board. The winner is the player who removes all the chips or markers from their board first.
Team Scoring: Instead of everyone playing for themselves, players compete in small groups, allowing for more brainpower while thinking up words. It's recommended that you use trickier topics and/or shorten the timer from 60 seconds to 15-30 seconds.
Q. Does everyone seem open to keep playing? Are the disengaged able to be more engaged?
Q. Are people having fun — smiling, laughing, in deep thought?
Q. Do you hear productive strategizing about how to improve round-to-round?
Position the reflection around the need to be in motion and see measurable progress:
How did your team define success? What indicated you were on the right track?
What game insights can you apply to better handle future times of crisis or uncertainty?
Did this game give you any ideas about how to activate team skills and resources in new ways?
Position the reflection around the purpose of playing as a collective group:
Did certain players enjoy the game more than others? Why or why not?
Why did you engage the way you did? Would anything have helped increase your engagement?
Did the outcome surprise you? Why or why not?