The aim of this activity is to develop observational skills and build empathy with others.
This is an improvisation that is suitable for groups of up to 12 young people. Introduce the area you are going to use as a stage and explain that this is now the venue for a party. The chair is the front door and the bell is the doorbell that each guest will ring as they arrive.
Ask for a volunteer to become the ‘host’ of the party. The rest of the group are now the ‘guests’. At the start of the activity the host should wait for the guests to arrive with a neutral emotion.
The first guest then rings the bell and enters the party in an extremely emotional state. For example, angry, happy, scared or excited.
If you’re online, a volunteer should say which girl has just arrived.
The host of the party needs to look closely at the guest and assess what emotion they are portraying. They should then mirror this and acquire the same emotional state, talking and reacting in the same way.
The next guest rings the bell and the host answers the door inviting them into the party. Again, the new guest will bring into the party another emotion that needs to be guessed and passed on.
Carry on until all the young people are at the party – the bigger the group the harder this is to do! Make sure that no-one is cheating by just watching the new arrivals and copying them. The idea is to build the atmosphere and change it gradually whilst still talking and interacting with different members of the group.
Once everyone has joined the party let the improvisation continue for a few minutes before closing. Review how the girls chose to portray different emotions and how easy it was to pick up on. For example, what were the signs that someone who had arrived was angry? Is it so easy to tell in real life?
Small hand bell.