Susan Berg's Activity Ideas Galore
By Susan Berg, CDP, AD,  BS(COTA/L)
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Susan Berg
Author, Activity Director
Activities Director Blog
Alzheimers Ideas
About Susan

Susan Berg has been a
healthcare professional and
educator for over 20 years. She
is the, activity director, of
many years, at Hunt Nursing
and Rehabilitation Center in
Danvers. While there, she has
gained much dementia care
and activity experience and
knowledge. She has had
special training in dementia
care and dementia activities
through the Alzheimer’s
Association and other
educational forums. Berg is the
author of Adorable
Photographs of Our Baby-
Meaningful, Mind-Stimulating
Activities and More for the
Memory Challenged, Their
Loved Ones, and Involved
Professionals, a book for those
with dementia and an
excellent resource for
caregivers and healthcare
professionals.
FEATURING TONS OF CRAFT AND BULLETIN BOARD SUPPLIES
LOW IMPACT EXERCISE SYSTEM DESIGNED WITH SENIORS IN MIND
Take a look
at Susan's book
Flash Cards are
available  to use
with Susan's Book
Note:  They can also be
used without the book
and are ideal for group
use.
Celebrating the Chinese New Year

Hopefully you will be celebrating Chinese New Year on or about Sunday, February 14,
2010.

I know this happens to fall on another well celebrated holiday, Valentines Day
However Chinese New Year can be a magical time for those with Alzheimers disease
and related dementias and other long term care residents if you do the two activities I
suggest.

This is the Year of the Tiger.  I want to suggest two things that are easy to do, adaptable
to one to one visits, can get other staff members involved and are fun

First tell each person his/her Chinese personality which are characteristics according
to what year he/she was born in. For example, I was born in 1949 which is the Year of
the Ox. People who were born in that year are…..
http://activitiesdirector.blogspot.
com/2010/01/chines-horoscope-chinese-horoscope-for.html

You can ask everyone when he/she was born and then see what the personality
characteristics are according to the Chinese zodiac. If they do not know the year they
were born  in, you may have to check a their chart . Here
http://activitiesdirector.blogspot.
com/2010/01/chinese-fortunes.html  are the animals of the zodiac.

Another easy activity for Chinese New Year is making fortune cookies
  • First you will need to print or hand write some Chinese fortunes in large print.
    You can make up fortunes that will entice residents and others to come to
    activities such as: You will win at bingo, or you will get a high score at bowling
  • Then cut them and fold them
  • Next bake, buy, or get some cookies that almost everyone can eat. Put the
    cookies on a plate and put the fortunes in a bag. You can put the one fortune
    and one cookie in a small baggie
  • Start the activity by having a group member pick a fortune out of the bag. Have
    him/her read it to the group. Make sure to clap and praise the participant for
    picking such a great fortune. Next give this group member a cookie of his/her
    choice.
  • Go around the room until everyone has had a turn.
  • After the group is over, you, your staff, and volunteers can go visit those in their
    rooms. You can talk about their fortune according to the Chinese zodiac and
    then they can pick a fortune and a cookie out.

Here is a simple craft that almost anyone can do. You can also use this craft for other
celebrations.

It is drawing fireworks. Participants have to use their imagination or remember how
fireworks looked to them. To help spark their imagination, have some large pictures of
fireworks to show them. Or you can draw some as a sample yourself. Go to
http:
//dementiaviews.blogspot.com/2010/01/easy-craft-for-those-with-dementia.html
For visually impaired participants, use dark thick markers.

Did you know that dominoes or dominoes is a Chinese invention? While discussing
Chinese New Year you can mention this fact. Then play a game of dominoes sometime
in February. You may have to modify it so all can participate.
Here are the basic rules.

Each player takes seven dominoes for his hand. The remaining dominoes if any, are
left face down on the table to be drawn later if a player is unable to play from his hand.

The player who drew the highest double or the highest domino plays first, playing any
domino he wishes from his had.
   
The object of the game is to lay all your tiles on the board. The touching ends must
match. Domino occurs when one player goes out by playing all of his dominoes.
There is a point system involved, but I do not bother with that.
To see the point system, go to
http://dementiaviews.blogspot.com/2010/01/dominos-
fun-game-for-those-with.html
Have fun with Chinese New Year.