2. Explain the activity. Read the directions as listed on Handout 1. (When you have done this
activity a few times, you can tell them what the best performance time from previous
groups has been, and challenge them to beat it.) Remind them to hold up a hand when they
are finished. Tell them that there will be a prize for the first person to correctly complete
the quiz (optional).
3. Tell them to begin and start marking time.
4. Stop the watch as soon as the first person holds up his or her hand.
5. Show the correct answers and debrief the whole group. (If you work in small groups, dis-
tribute the answer sheet handout and have participants discuss the exercise and then share
their answers with the larger group.) If there is a prize, award it to the first person to have
all correct answers.
6. Summarize the learnings and the experience.
Depending on your audience and the purpose for doing the exercise, you might want to split
the group in half:
• Half the group does the exercises without “translations” (not changing the signs).
• The other half has to “translate” into the new symbols (create an answer sheet with the
Ask them to reflect on the experience, and ask such questions as:
1. You were asked not to write the symbols on the paper. Who wrote them anyway, and
why or why not? Look for different answers from different cultures:
“Timing was important and I am competitive.”
“I usually follow instructions. It was too hard otherwise.”
“It was all a mental job, it was tiring, and I was getting frustrated because I had to con-
stantly go back and forth.”