Observation, Memory, Concentration, Skills For Tracking and Life

kim tracking observation skills

Essential Skills For Tracking And Life

Observation, Memory, Concentration

In a previous post I spoke about improving observation skills and gave some tips that can help not just children, but adults as well to develop their memory (Observation Skills, What to teach your children,) In this post is a game that is named after the character who played the game to improve his observation and memory skills. The book is Kim by Rudyard Kipling in 1901 and the game is “Kim’s Game.” It is a book that is well worth reading. These are skills for tracking and life.

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I always say it is important to get our children outdoors, but sometimes we cant. So here is a game that can be played anywhere, indoors and out

Improving memory, observation and concentration skills are  vital for all people especially children. It is beneficial for their education, learning about wildlife and nature and skills that are great everyday life skills, that can help keep us all safe.

Spittlebugs

Children hunted for spittlebugs, searching out spittle balls

Only today I was returning home from collecting my daughter from school. We were walking home with another family and the mum pointed out what

looked like spittle on one of the boys sleeves. I had seen a lot of spittle from spittle bugs on a privet hedge on my way to the school, so I got my daughter to find some on our way home. She found some and I showed them the immature spittle bugs in the spittle. The other family were amazed at what they saw. Many people just like this family walk past things like spittle bugs and other bits of nature and wildlife as they go about their everyday business. By enhancing our observations, memory, concentration opens a whole new world which is fun and exciting to many people. But the benefit doesn’t end there, these same skills help a child develop their education and improve their lives in a fun and healthy way.

 

Kim’s Game

In the book “Kim”, Kims game was used to teach Kim skills he needed to become an agent and remember important information. It is a simple game still played a lot by Beavers and Cub Scouts.

The basic game is set up by putting twenty items on a cloth. The items should have different uses and backgrounds. The person playing the game is then given one minute to look at the items then they are covered by a cloth or removed from sight. The person playing then gives a description of what he saw in as much detail as possible. The focus should be on detailed descriptions. Here are two examples.

  1. A door Key.
  2. A Yale brand key that is bronze in colour for a latch type lock.

Initially a child will most probably give a description similar to description one. Once they have remembered the item ask some open questions to encourage them to describe the item in more detail, like example two. Initially the game can be simply recalling the objects, it can then be developed into a more technical. The development of the skills should be gradual and fun. This can be done in a variety of ways.

Variations On Kim’s Game

Changing the format of Kim’s Game isn’t just about keeping the game fresh and fun. The variations

Kim's Game, skills for tracking and life

Kim’s Game, skills for tracking and life

make the person playing observe in different ways, so they start looking at situations from various angles and points of view. It teaches then to see what is in front of them, what is missing and what is out of place.

There are many ways to change the way the game is played.

  • Change the items for an object such as a package with an address, postcode, stamp, return address etc.
  • Let the participants observe a room for a given time then recall a description in detail.
  • Remove items then show the remaining items, participant lists missing items.
  • Present items a various distances.
  • Place distinctive or similar items to distract the participant.

The important thing to remember is to develop these skills in a fun way and take your time, these are skills for tracking and life. Have fun with Kim’s Game.

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