Swish Boing is a game for small groups used to revise things like numbers, days of the week, months of the year or anything that you want to remember in order. This game can be adjusted for the level. For example, preschool students can use it to practice to count from one-to-ten and junior high students can use it to count from 1 to 100 (see below).
This game is good because it is fast and keeps the students thinking all the time (as long as the teams are small). Because the play can go in any direction the students must always be listening. Kids enjoy doing the actions and becoming fast at the game.
Step 1 – The actions
- without the vocabulary
Students stand/sit around in a circle (smaller numbers are better – 4 or 5 are good). One person starts by saying swish and doing the associated gesture. The play is now with the person to the left (in the case of a right handed swish action) or with the person to the right (in the case of a left handed swish action). The person who has the play can either do a swish or a boing action. Which hand they use depends upon which action was done previously (see below).
This game contains 4 actions. Two with the right hand and two with the left hand.
Right Handed Swish
Using the right hand, make a wave gesture from right to left. This should be directed at the person to the left of you. Use this action when the ‘play’ come from your right. This action lets play continue from right to left.
Left Handed Swish
A mirror action of the Right Handed Swish. Use this action when the ‘play’ comes from your left.
Right Handed Boing
Use the right hand, make a gesture like a fist pump. This should be directed at the person to the left of you. Use this action when the ‘play’ comes from the left. This gesture is like getting a ball from the left and creating a wall on your right hand side with your right arm. This action takes play from the left and bounces it back.
Left Handed Boing
A mirror action of the Right Handed Boing. Use this action when the ‘play’ comes from your right.
Step 2 – The English
Use the boing swish game, instead of saying boing and swish, the students use numbers. The numbers are always increasing. By one for a swish, by two for a boing. Say the number according to the action you are going to do. For example, the count is currently at 12. The next person says 13 and does a swish, or 14 and does a boing. Once the count gets to a certain number (100 for example), reset the count. This game is good for getting the numbers ingrained in their head. This game could also work for Days of the week and months of the year.
- See picture above (pretend the capsicum are students)
An example of a 1-to-10 game. There are five students in a circle (facing inwards).
- Student one starts with a Right Hand Swish (clockwise) and says "one".
- Play moves to student two.
- Student two uses another Right Hand Swish (clockwise) and says "two".
- Play moves to student three.
- Student two uses another Right Hand Swish (clockwise) and says "three".
- Play moves to student four.
- Student four uses a Left Hand Boing (anti-clockwis) and says "five".
- Play returns to student three.
- Student three uses a Right Hand Boing (anti-clockwis) and says "seven".
- Play returns to student four.
Etc, when the count gets to 10, the next number said is 1.
The Third Action
The third action is called Zap. The action is done by clapping your hands together and with both hands pointing to someone who is opposite in the circle (anyone apart from the people immediately next to you).
The Zap is worth 3 for counting (or maybe negative 2). The Zap can only be done after a boing.
For younger students, counting by two or three may be too difficult when combined with English. In this case, just count all actions as one when adding to the total.