Feature Writer Lynne Tatum – Here Are Other Games to Play

I enjoy playing games of varying types and degrees of difficulty but I find myself overwhelmed by the infinite assortment and uninterested in learning to play the hottest game of the week. I use a combination of technology and good old brain power and imagination to host and play games that can include almost everyone.

As Activities Coordinator for our Alumni Association, I was tasked with providing interesting activities for this weekend. Maria found herself up on a stepstool passing down what old board games we have left. Some we couldn’t find, others were in a shambles and the ones that were in reasonable condition, we couldn’t remember how to play or couldn’t read the small print on the cards. Here’s where my iPhone came in quite handy. Knowing, but unable to find, our game called Scattergories, I remembered that I’d purchased a game called 94’s. If you search for Scattergories in the AppStore, that is the game that comes up. Thankful I’d installed the paid version, our Alumni members sat happily playing for Hershey’s kisses. I set the game to “Relaxed” mode (no timer) and allowed “Samantha” to read the categories and letters we were to use. Example: Musical Styles beginning with the letter R. As you can imagine, some categories were easier than others. This game is quite accessible with the voiceover screen reader and can be played solo or in teams. There are tips and jokers and hints but we played the straight game and had a wonderful time.

Did you know that Siri can be used as a countdown timer? I told her to set a timer for three minutes. During this time period we moved through the alphabet, trying to think up songs beginning with each letter. Now, you might be thinking that’s easy enough. I challenge you to try it. I bet, like us, you’ll think of the older and standard tunes and newer tunes will completely evade you. Full disclosure: we were in a group where the average age was at least fifty years old, so perhaps our long-term memory was kicking in as our short-term memory went right down the tubes.

Another fun game that requires only your memory is known to us as a Sing Down. A leader of a team offers a word that must be in either the title or somewhere in the song. If played by teams, each time a song is sung that another team has listed, that song is eliminated. A note taker is recommended in this situation. We played as one, mostly harmonious, team.

Lastly, have you ever played musical chairs with people who are blind and visually impaired? I’ll leave that to your fertile imaginations.

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